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SinisterVampire319

Shelf Sitters

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Posted (edited)

Was wondering if anyone knows. What are some of the biggest shelf sitters in Hobby shops. Talking about the everyone wants it. But no one buys it kits.
I heard somewhere that Monogram's 1/48 PBY and Revell's 1/32 Hawker Hunter were a couple.
Alan

Edited by SinisterVampire319

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Hi,

  I think Monograms’ PBY is pretty good. Add Belcher’s Bits -6 conversion, Blackbird’s decals, and a few other aftermarket goodies and it’s a neat kit.

Just SOB and it’s still pretty cool. Didn’t know it wasn’t that popular.

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I had Monograms PBY once, plus Belcher Bits stuff to convert to an earlier version. Then I realized how huge the finished model would be and eventually sold it (I think, or gave it away). It IS a very nice looking kit.

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53 minutes ago, afoxbat said:

Hi,

  I think Monograms’ PBY is pretty good. Add Belcher’s Bits -6 conversion, Blackbird’s decals, and a few other aftermarket goodies and it’s a neat kit.

Just SOB and it’s still pretty cool. Didn’t know it wasn’t that popular.

Yeah I know about Belcher bits tail fix for it.

 

13 minutes ago, Mstor said:

I had Monograms PBY once, plus Belcher Bits stuff to convert to an earlier version. Then I realized how huge the finished model would be and eventually sold it (I think, or gave it away). It IS a very nice looking kit.

I haven't had it before. I knew it was large which is probably why I didn't get one. It is a nice looking model and I do want one still. I do have one of the Hunter.
I am more interested in what kits were poor sellers and why?
Thanks, Alan

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I’ve heard that the the Revell 1:48 Ju-52, Hasegawa 1:48 Sea King, and 1:48 Trumpeter R/A-5 vigilante are all really slow sellers considering they are all well tooled, and highly requested by surveys such as the FSM reader poll. 

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4 hours ago, is it windy yet? said:

I’ve heard that the the Revell 1:48 Ju-52, Hasegawa 1:48 Sea King, and 1:48 Trumpeter R/A-5 vigilante are all really slow sellers considering they are all well tooled, and highly requested by surveys such as the FSM reader poll. 

 I’ve heard likewise, but still can’t understand why. All are cool kits but aren’t the “sexy”P-51.

 A possible exception is the RA-5C. Beautiful aircraft and model. But the nose is all wrong, the rivet detail way too overscale, and if you’re rich and can find the now defunct Cutting Edge forward fuselage correction set along with cockpit, wheel wells, intakes, fuselage reinforcement, aft section correction, and decals; this might dissuade one from buying the kit. Hence, the shelf sitter. Who wants to buy a kit ($65.00) and then blow another $75-90.00 on aftermarket stuff? (And that was a year before Cutting Edge folded).  

 And good luck if you want to do

an A3J-1 (A-5A). Think the conversion kit originally ran $70.00. Now, you only have to cough up for the Vigi kit, then all the other aftermarket stuff, (if you want that detail), and then, if you can find one, the conversion kit going for around $650-750.00. So, about $900.00 today?? That’s a lot of coin for your hobby- and one kit! Better do Nats quality work on this one.

 Thus, if the modeler does his/ her research; escalating cost can relegate that kit eternally to the shelf. Keep in mind, this is only a single example. But kit popularity may be a factor as well. The Hunter probably has better sales in Great Britain and India vs the US. And as for the SH-3G,

you got me!

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Almost forgot. I did see Raymond Chung had posted a while back. Talked about some of his kits that were slow sellers.
 

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Some shelf sitters kill potentially great subjects too.

 

I know the ICM 1/350 König-Class was much wanted by a select few, but it was a shelf sitter and I bought one only to support that ICM had announced a 1/350 Essex at time the König hit the market.  This was before Trumpeter became the main player in 1/350.  If ICM had done the Essex class first, that would have sold well, but instead the König-Class probably made them think 1/350 in general will not sell well.

 

An aircraft example I can think of is the Kitty Hawk 1/48 F2H2 Banshee. Lots want this kit, but I don't think it sold well, but had the F2H-3/-4 Banshee (the later version of Banshee) come first, that would have sold well.  Announced in 2016, but has become a back burner project or dropped completely by Kitty Hawk.  Maybe I'm wrong on that?

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23 hours ago, is it windy yet? said:

I’ve heard that the the Revell 1:48 Ju-52, Hasegawa 1:48 Sea King, and 1:48 Trumpeter R/A-5 vigilante are all really slow sellers considering they are all well tooled, and highly requested by surveys such as the FSM reader poll. 

The Ju 52 has been in the Revell Germany catalogue almost constantly since it came out in 1998/9.

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What about the Tamiya 1/48 Brewster B-339 Buffalo?

 

Can't imagine anyone gets exicted of it.

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On 7/29/2019 at 8:49 AM, Jonathan S said:

An aircraft example I can think of is the Kitty Hawk 1/48 F2H2 Banshee. Lots want this kit, but I don't think it sold well, but had the F2H-3/-4 Banshee (the later version of Banshee) come first, that would have sold well.  Announced in 2016, but has become a back burner project or dropped completely by Kitty Hawk.  Maybe I'm wrong on that?

 

I can't help but think that it was the shape issues and word-of-mouth that kept it from selling well.  Believe me...as a fan of '50s-era jets, I would have been all over this Banshee no matter what version it was.  However, after reading about and seeing all the pictures of the shape errors and what people had to go through to fix them, that was enough for me to not buy the kit.  I think if the kit had been shaped properly, you probably could have put me down for at least two or three of them.  I think it would have been a good-selling kit but Kitty Hawk really dropped the ball on this one.  The popularity and demand were there.  The kit quality was not.

 

Eric

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The hobby shop in my area closed a few years ago, but it seemed for years there was a Tamiya 1/48 Dewoitine D.520 that never seemed to move. It always seemed to be in the way when I was looking for something else.

 

I also remember seeing weird Revell or RoG reissues in silver boxes that seemed to be sale proof, but I can not recall the specific kits. 

 

If you want to expand it to vendor tables, old Heller and airfix 1/72 kits seem to be a burden to vendors who drag them all around the country, never to be sold.

 

I have not thought about it before, but wow I really miss browsing the stock at the hobby store. 😞 

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4 hours ago, Kurt H. said:

I have not thought about it before, but wow I really miss browsing the stock at the hobby store. 😞 

 

Man, I can't agree with you more. I could lose myself in a good hobby shop. When I was a pre-teen I would take the long bus ride out to a shopping center that had a real good hobby shop (Hobby Horse in the Capital Court shopping center in Milwaukee for anyone here who might remember). I would wander the isles for an hour or two just trying to make up my mind what kit(s) to get, all the while holding a bunch of Floquil Military Miniature and/or Pactra International colors paints in my hands. It was a little slice of heaven and truly a fond memory.

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On 7/29/2019 at 9:49 AM, Jonathan S said:

 

An aircraft example I can think of is the Kitty Hawk 1/48 F2H2 Banshee. Lots want this kit, but I don't think it sold well, 

It likely would have sold better if they hadn't screwed up major parts of the basic shape.  Once the magnitude of the errors became generally known, thanks to those who were the initial purchasers, I suspect a lot who would have purchased the kit (myself included) decided it wasn't worth the time, effort, and expense to correct what should have been right from the get-go.

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On 7/30/2019 at 6:01 AM, cag_200 said:

What about the Tamiya 1/48 Brewster B-339 Buffalo?

 

Can't imagine anyone gets exicted of it.

One of my favorite models. No, I'm serious! It's a neat little kit, is fun to build and has many unique variants.

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When I worked at Hobby Town in college, we had a few shelf sitters too.  The 1/32 Tamiya jets were some.  Unfortunately, the price we had to sell them at, most people did not want to spend on a kit, or knew they could get them cheaper elsewhere.  For the most part unless its a popular mainstream item, your Mustangs, Corsairs, Tomcats, Eagles and Hornets, it didn't really sell.  For every "uber" modeler like ourselves, there was 2 to 3 who just wanted a kit.  Maybe they were just getting into the hobby or returning after a long hiatus.  Most kids want a F-15 with missiles and bombs, not a obscure subject they never heard of.  A good rule of thumb was, if you could see it at a current airshow, or was in a major movie, it would  sell as a model. 

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The local place I went to as a kid couldn't get rid of the old Testers OV-10 Bronco kit. I think it was because he had flown them in Vietnam and had a personal love for it. I actually built one and loved the kit but couldn't get people to take them home. He used to raffle them off during the holidays. The Revell Arizona was another one. He stocked lots of WW2 and 'Nam stuff and was a great store. Buncha cool folks used to meet up there on Saturday mornings and eat McDonalds sausage biscuits and talk plastic. Great memories! 

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On ‎8‎/‎17‎/‎2019 at 9:38 PM, RKic said:

One of my favorite models. No, I'm serious! It's a neat little kit, is fun to build and has many unique variants.

Completely agree.   Neat little model that's been around for quite awhile.  Have built a couple and always enjoyed them.

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Way back in the day, 40 plus years ago I remember the Lindberg "Blue Devil" destroyer gathering

quite a bit of dust. jon

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I was the Sunday guy at Tomcat Hobbys in Riverside, CA back in 1987/88. We had a Tamiya 1/350 Tirpitz that never sold. Bill Baluch (manager) always wondered why Tom (owner) even ordered it. He always said those kind of kits were sent by mistake.

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I can't really contribute specifics to this thread, but when i visit the few brick and mortar hobby shops still around, I always see the big boxed kits sitting high on the top shelves, sitting end-on, with their box tops facing outwards for all to see.  I don't know if they are there because they don't fit on lower shelves, or if the proprietors think they 'look good' up there, in essence advertising model kits in general.  As I recall, this used to be common practice years ago, when hobby shops were far more common than today.  I do pine for the days when such shops were common, just like book stores.  I could wander the aisles of hobby shops and book stores for hours, and there certainly is something about having all those 'toys' sitting there in front of you that creates a visceral appeal that the webpages advertising models and books, and records, and even VHS tapes/DVDs cannot convey.  I remember the hours i used to spend at Krochs and Brentanos, I think it was a Chicago area bookstore that was my favorite way to while away hours, looking at the paperbacks.  And the one really great model store that was maybe 5 miles from my parent's house, where they displayed the most fantastic armor dioramas, which I'm sure, compared to the spectacular builds that so many folks create today would be average at best, is where I loved to go buy models and wish I could build and paint tanks and airplanes even 1/10 as good as the ones that were shown in those glass cases.

 

Sorry to go off on a tangent, but any threads that make me think about the good old days before the internet and Amazon just carry me away...  I'm 60 years old, to give you a sense of the times I'm talking about....

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