Hobbico Bankruptcy

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by chrisudy, Jan 10, 2018.

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  1. Jan 12, 2018 #61

    Charles_McG

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    Wood shop, metal shop (from welding, bending, joining to casting,CNC lathe, mill, plasma and laser cutting and 3D printing), multiple cooking courses, a print shop (silk screen and various printers and cutters)
     
  2. Jan 12, 2018 #62

    James Duffy

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  3. Jan 12, 2018 #63

    KarlS

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    Ham radio is NOT "old school". We are at the forefront of digital communications.
     
  4. Jan 12, 2018 #64

    Charles_McG

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  5. Jan 12, 2018 #65

    mrwalsh85

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    Let's hope not. If Estes were operated in the same manner as Tesla, we'd be comparing Estes to Curtis Turner...
     
  6. Jan 12, 2018 #66

    aerostadt

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    I got a Tower Hobbies catalog yesterday. I assume that they are still open for business.
     
  7. Jan 12, 2018 #67

    Titan II

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    https://www.towerhobbies.com/
     
  8. Jan 12, 2018 #68

    Buckeye

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    Really? Please explain. When people today think "forefront of digital communications" they think Facebook, Twitter, Netflix, Google, Apple, Verizon, Skype, Facetime, etc, not ham radio.
     
  9. Jan 12, 2018 #69

    LithosphereRocketry

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    I spend a lot of time on Steam... but most of that is Kerbal Space Program... I'm a young rocketeer who may be *too* into rocketry...

    Sent from my LGL44VL using Tapatalk
     
  10. Jan 13, 2018 #70

    Andrew_ASC

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    Graduated high school in 2011. They taught auto mechanic track for a "technical route" while the other route was geared with physics and lower calc for people wanting STEM/college entry. There wasn't a wood shop at CHS in SE TN. We were kinda poor.

    I got to learn Lathe, CNC Fadal VMC-15, manual mill, and more at manufacturing processes class for mechanical engineering route once at university years later. The public university I transferred to has a shop and I was one of the fewer students permitted to use a lathe as they don't teach that even to engineer students there.
     
  11. Jan 13, 2018 #71

    Andrew_ASC

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    The private university attitude at machine shop was you bring your own materials you machine whatever you want. Tuition was 4x amount. Ol' Taiwanese Dean of engineering at CBU donated a lot of his own money. He was all we don't have nice machines but we have enough for you students to learn. We had ww2 clunker lathes and a Old fart named Moats that kept every machine stocked with tool bits. The public school UTC acknowledged my transfer status and previous heavy machinery experience from a course manufacturing processes. They were still afraid as ---- about lawsuits. So a shop foreman had to watch me operate at all times. The public university lacked capital to maintain enough tool bits for lathes for student engineer use frequently. We occasionally need the features for senior and sophomore projects. Although there were nicer HAAS machines at public school.
     
  12. Jan 13, 2018 #72

    Andrew_ASC

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    They zip tied a goddamn CNC plasma cutter together last semester. Used it for a USRC SEDS rocketry base plate on a launch pad. The businesses use to donate tooling to school shops and they haven't done that in decades.
     
  13. Jan 13, 2018 #73

    Andrew_ASC

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    Even our machinist cringed. I even put some personal money into drill bits for a lab. Everyone wanted to blame the machinist and I said no it's wrong that we pay $5,000+ in tuition and consumable tooling bits for machinery wasn't replaced. I emailed a freaking accounting executive at 3AM in morning once. I did an internship then dumped some personal money into a lab on tooling bits so we could finish a senior design rocket project last summer. About $1.4k donated. Mechanical department never got the funds. And they wonder with 63% are dropping f--- out of this place.

    Execs are giving themselves bonuses or some crap. Our Dean couldn't even get funds from department it's sad.
    And these dorks can use CAD and they won't understand a lathe or mill needs to hold a part to get machined or tolerances. Guess I was lucky to learn...
     
  14. Jan 13, 2018 #74

    Andrew_ASC

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    Started with a SkyScooter had Nicad packs and flew a few hobby King R/C. Would buy transmitters from a local hobby town. They were horrified of ARF 50mm EDF jets at $60. But I'd get batteries and connectors locally soldered at hobby stores. Hobbies never were that popular with my generation.
     
  15. Jan 13, 2018 #75

    dhbarr

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    5 in a row is a new record, I think.
     
  16. Jan 13, 2018 #76

    Cl(VII)

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    [​IMG]

    "The one thing you don't want is air in the conversation."
     
  17. Jan 13, 2018 #77

    Andrew_ASC

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    Just imagine a generation of engineering students that may not understand a rod needs to be long enough to fit in a chuck on a lathe to manufacture a cone. You can laugh and I will say they didn't learn. They didn't have the opportunity to use a machine shop.

    You might find it rare for a new young person to even assemble R/C cars etc. Most probably never walked into a Hobby Town.
     
  18. Jan 13, 2018 #78

    Cnorm

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    Every bit about himself and not a lick of rocketry nor relevance to the OP. If nothing else, gotta admire the consistency.
     
  19. Jan 13, 2018 #79

    scalerockets

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    What I can tell you from a Manufacturer/Distributor point of view is that Amazon and Hobby King is sucking the air out of smaller Hobby Shops, online Dealers and Distributors.

    For Model Rockets our web site (Discount Rocketry) used to appear on the first page of of Google for almost every product we carried. Now its Estes Direct, Amazon and more Amazon. The problem with doing business through Amazon is that you have to be willing to give up another 20% of you margin to them over and above any discount you may offer to be Amazon Prime plus you have to have stock on hand at all their locations or if you ship directly you have to eat the shipping in addition to the margin you give them and the discount you also give the customer. For a dealer there is nothing left.

    We manufacture our own kits and some of them have gotten some traction over the years. There is no other place to get our own kits except from us and we do not offer them on Amazon. We also manufacture our kits in the us and most of our materials suppliers are in the US also.

    Because this such a niche market I expect Estes will survive as there is no credible Chinese competitor in the US currently. Can't say that about overseas sales though. I know the company that used to make the motors for Quest In China has some kits and launch equipment that they offer directly to other countries. This may be a contributing factor to Estes cutbacks recently.

    I really don't see a weakening of Model Rocketry in general. When we go to launches with our trailer store, we have seen a increase in business over the last year or two. It seems that business is coming out of the malaise we see that started in 2009/2010. It's not quite back to where it was, but the trend is still up at this point.

    I don't think were seeing the Radio Control or Model Rocket Hobbies dying. I believe were just seeing the shake up of the hobby market due to online sales changes and some degree foreign competition.
     
  20. Jan 13, 2018 #80

    Andrew_ASC

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    someone asked about high school if they still teach shop I answered. I flew hobby king products on a Dx7 transmitter. I'd use the hobby towns to get stuff soldered. I'm gonna miss hobby town...
     
  21. Jan 13, 2018 #81

    kclo4

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    Andrew, holy jebus, use the freaking edit button. Here, I will show you where it is.
    When you get a new thought to add to the conversation before somebody replied to you, press edit post, and make your changes.

    K Thx Bi

    Edit Post.PNG
     
  22. Jan 13, 2018 #82

    dr wogz

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    I've worked with a few engineers who weren't very bright. One couldn't figure out how to loosen a nut. It was tight, but he tried loosening it by forcing the wrench in both directions, and it wouldn't budge. I gave it a really good heave and it loosened up. "Wow, how did you do that? I tried it both ways.." same engineer asked about the screws we used.. He asked what the 6 meant, and also what the -32 meant..

    had a CAD guy draw a bracket, a sheet metal part. I asked him to draw out the flat pattern, and fold it up.. He did. I asked if he saw a problem with it, he said no. It was some fancy thing with a few bends, two of which couldn't allow for die clearances. Same guy also expected consistent ±0.01" over several bends..
     
  23. Jan 13, 2018 #83

    Andrew_ASC

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    Not one person in fluids lab knew how to calibrate a wind tunnel. I asked for a Allen wrench. They all thought I went nuts. I showed them under the machine there was a single nut with a hex lock. Some young adults were asking what an Allen wrench was. It loosens then you move the nut on shaft to new position and a torque is created by unbalancing a threaded rod that finally connect to a mechanical scale. They were reading the wrong numbers for years apparently. LOL.

    Then the wind tunnel didn't turn on. It was plugged in. The professor was crying thinking she was going to lose her job. I'm still a mechanical engineer student so I said here if I break this wind tunnel it'll be my fault but no one has the guts to push the green button after fifteen minutes of everyone standing around. I said I think the inverter is off. Turns out the motor was DC and power supply was A/C. The green button in foreign language was a power inverter on switch. It would've been $65,000 mistake if it wasn't. Most tense moment I ever had with a machine...

    I wouldn't know a darn thing about a sheet metal operation. Used press brake and rollers. But not the die sizes other than gee metal has to clear the die. Usually -32 would indicate thread per inch.
     
  24. Jan 13, 2018 #84

    Flyfalcons

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    :eyeroll: :facepalm:
     
  25. Jan 13, 2018 #85

    jlabrasca

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    Does it strike anybody else that the category "hobby shop" seems kind of quaint?

    I just searched on "hobby store" with google maps, and the differences between a hobby shop, a craft store, a toy store, and stores selling various collectibles seem to be invisible to the algorithm. Maybe this reflects a shift in the way we categorize?

    From driving around looking for places to buy aircraft ply and balsa sheets, I know that the 'hobby shop' nearest to where I live is really a model train store. Next nearest caters almost exclusively to RC car and airplane enthusiasts (but does not stock much in the way of sheet goods). Next nearest after that, a Michaels, then another RC-only shop, then -- about 10 miles away -- an independent hobby store with "Hobbies" in the name that sells all of the kinds of stuff I remember from the hobby shops from middle decades of the 20th C. There are three Hobbytown USA locations within 20 miles of downtown -- all well out in the suburbs, and none especially well-stocked with anything in particular.

    Walking around in one of those with my daughter, who was about 9 y.o. a the time, she spotted a few toys on the shelves, which made her skeptical when I told her the store was for people who built scale models. This lead to a discussion of whether Lego builders counted as modelers in the same way that someone who built Gundam was a modeler, and whether rockets and planes and cars that that weren't made to resemble a real vehicle were models or toys. While the stock made sense to me, I was stumped when she asked what slot cars had in common with metal detectors and jigsaw puzzles.

    Meanwhile, the little True Value Hardware a couple of blocks from my house appears to be positioning itself against the invasive Orchard Supply stores by trying to cater to makers and modelers. So far, this includes an aisle stocked with Midwest Products ply, balsa, and basswood, K-S Metals, Testors Paints, etc. They also carry a small selection of the kinds of tools you'd use to repair a multi-rotor or do board-level electronics (this in addition the usual garden, home, and small appliance repair tools) and a surprisingly large selection of adhesives.
     
  26. Jan 13, 2018 #86

    byoungblood

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    I actually buy very little of my "hobby" supplies from Amazon. Most often the prices are just so-so or the seller doesn't stock it.

    However, I do most of my hobby related spending online. Local options where I live are about nil (going back about 10 years now) and what does exist their inventory is spotty at best. Even in categories they are well stocked, you almost always find them lacking something, and none have much of an online presence to speak of. If you need something, you're left with calling the shop up, get put on hold for 10 minutes, only to be told they're out of stock, can't find it, or don't carry that at all. I then usually get offered to order it, usually at full list, and they might have it in a couple of weeks because they're just going to include it on their next order to their distributor.

    In those same 10 minutes, I've found EXACTLY what I need online, and it is on my doorstep in 4-5 days at most. Lack of availability is what, in my opinion, is killing traditional retailers. It isn't worth the effort to even bother going to a store that is only going to have half of what you need when you can pick up your laptop, tablet, phone, etc., and never leave the house.
     
  27. Jan 13, 2018 #87

    The_Lone_Beagle

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    LOL, we had a Model 1 with 16k of memory and a cassette drive...you were using the Star Wars version, compared to my cave man version.

    I'm not a big fan of useless bells and whistles. Kids should learn how to write...and they should learn how to type...I'm always afraid that schools fall for "crazes" and forget the basics, and then the kids get shortchanged (but they don't figure that out until later on in life).
     
  28. Jan 13, 2018 #88

    burkefj

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    Ok, so you are an engineering student and the only one with common sense apparently but you are using hobby town to get stuff soldered, why not just get a soldering iron? Just curious.....

     
  29. Jan 14, 2018 #89

    rcktnut

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    He doesn't have time, spends all his time on perfecting fin fillets. See post #9: http://www.rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?143153-Why-Dual-fins
     
  30. Jan 14, 2018 #90

    solid_fuel

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    And post #10 and post #11...
     

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