Real model prices?

Discuss Hornby Model Railway products and related topics here. This includes (Lima, Rivarossi, Jouef, Electrotren).
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D605Eagle
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Real model prices?

Postby D605Eagle » Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:38 pm

Odd world of prices of models. Hornby mainstream models are mainly now eye wateringly expensive, but I just noticed an anomaly in all this. The ex airfix 14xx model which until recently was a mainstream model is now classed as railroad and the RRP is just £44.99. It was the same as this 15 years ago. To me it looks exactly the same model as before yet it's now so much cheaper? I get the feeling that all these excuses for price increases might not be as truthful as we have been led to believe.

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby Bigmet » Mon Nov 06, 2017 3:05 pm

It's business, and the price is whatever it needs to be for the business to make the target profit (not that Hornby have been very good at that of late) and then there are further considerations. When reality bites, as in 'there's a competitor product available' the price can change, simply to shift it against that competition and put a lid on their market share, or to place It in their 'entry level' category of product, or a bit of both...

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby Meister » Mon Nov 06, 2017 3:07 pm

And many retailers are offering it for significantly less - under £35 in some cases. So why are the J94 and Terrier ~£75 RRP when they should both be in the Railroad range at a similar price to the 14xx?

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby D605Eagle » Mon Nov 06, 2017 6:12 pm

Meister wrote:And many retailers are offering it for significantly less - under £35 in some cases. So why are the J94 and Terrier ~£75 RRP when they should both be in the Railroad range at a similar price to the 14xx?

These prices now asked for models appear to have nothing to do with production costs. If the models were so expensive to make, then the 14xx is being sold at a loss and I don't believe they would bother if that was the case.

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby Bufferstop » Mon Nov 06, 2017 8:51 pm

The 14xx isn't as popular as the other two, and it has a bit of a reputation for being "difficult". Dapol made improvements to the chassis but it still has a tendency to rock back and forth.
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Re: Real model prices?

Postby D605Eagle » Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:37 am

Bufferstop wrote:The 14xx isn't as popular as the other two, and it has a bit of a reputation for being "difficult". Dapol made improvements to the chassis but it still has a tendency to rock back and forth.

I still say they wouldn't make it or sell it if they weren't making a profit on it, and I can't see it being any cheaper to make than either the Terrier or the J94.

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby alex3410 » Tue Nov 07, 2017 8:05 am

I guess they don't have any competition for the Terrier so can get away with it?

they also rerelease it in new liveries to keep the 'value' up - I got the SECR version for example but would not have paid as much for the normal BR version.

The Terrier is also a smaller loco, without looking inside each i could not confirm but suspect it may need smaller components that are more expensive? (its a shot in the dark more than anything :lol: )

But at the end of the day you're right they would not be selling it unless it made a profit & with the Terrier it must be selling at its current price or the retailers would drop it to shift them.

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby Bigmet » Tue Nov 07, 2017 8:49 am

D605Eagle wrote: I still say they wouldn't make it or sell it if they weren't making a profit on it, and I can't see it being any cheaper to make than either the Terrier or the J94.

All their old tooling steam tank engine models - others include the L&Y pug, 61xx and N2 - are going to cost much the same in parts manufacture and assembly and finishing processes. The tooling is long ago amortised, fully paid for its production, just has to cover the charges for the ongoing maintenance and storage. The moulded and cast pieces are at the same cost scale of set up on the machines, and the energy, materials and labour content of production. These models all share the same 'most expensive' components which are the motors, wheels and axles, those items which contain contain machined parts. There might be a variance of +/- 20% in the costs of these models boxed and ready to ship, reflecting factors like more time consuming assembly or a more complex livery application. (And it will all be costed to the cent, exactly what the finished item's cost of manufacture amounts to.)

So if the RRP of the cheapest of these comparable models is £X, but some are priced at £2X or £3X, that reflects a marketing decision for what we can get, while achieving other objectives. It is the same for all manufactured consumer goods. As a simple example, look at something like a mobile phone range: the actual parts in the phones are all much the same in manufacturing and assembly cost but the premium model is sold for a lot more than the base model, because of all the extra capability on offer. And whisper it: in some classes of manufactured goods, the base models actually cost more to make than the premium offerings...

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby luckymucklebackit » Tue Nov 07, 2017 11:01 am

R3589 Railroad Range Class 48xx 0-4-2T 4837 in GWR green on today's Hattons Mailing List at £38!

(should I be posting this in Bargains)

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby D605Eagle » Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:08 pm

Alot of places have them for less than £35 Jim. Hattons aren't as competitive as they used to be.

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby D605Eagle » Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:16 pm

Bigmet wrote:
D605Eagle wrote: I still say they wouldn't make it or sell it if they weren't making a profit on it, and I can't see it being any cheaper to make than either the Terrier or the J94.

All their old tooling steam tank engine models - others include the L&Y pug, 61xx and N2 - are going to cost much the same in parts manufacture and assembly and finishing processes. The tooling is long ago amortised, fully paid for its production, just has to cover the charges for the ongoing maintenance and storage. The moulded and cast pieces are at the same cost scale of set up on the machines, and the energy, materials and labour content of production. These models all share the same 'most expensive' components which are the motors, wheels and axles, those items which contain contain machined parts. There might be a variance of +/- 20% in the costs of these models boxed and ready to ship, reflecting factors like more time consuming assembly or a more complex livery application. (And it will all be costed to the cent, exactly what the finished item's cost of manufacture amounts to.)

So if the RRP of the cheapest of these comparable models is £X, but some are priced at £2X or £3X, that reflects a marketing decision for what we can get, while achieving other objectives. It is the same for all manufactured consumer goods. As a simple example, look at something like a mobile phone range: the actual parts in the phones are all much the same in manufacturing and assembly cost but the premium model is sold for a lot more than the base model, because of all the extra capability on offer. And whisper it: in some classes of manufactured goods, the base models actually cost more to make than the premium offerings...

Yes this happens a lot. Its just personally it makes me take what model manufacturers say about costs with a pinch of salt. I believe that modern manufacturing processes and the fact that a large % of the production cost as assembly which remains constant no matter how many you sell they have come to the conclusion that reducing production to less than demand and upping the price overall makes more money. However I see this as self defeating going by how many people on the facebook selling pages are getting rid of all their models as they are no longer interested in the hobby due to costs. Even my local model shop says he thinks the hobby will implode sooner or later.

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby alex3410 » Tue Nov 07, 2017 12:47 pm

does this new revision of it still have traction tyres?

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby Bigmet » Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:22 pm

D605Eagle wrote:...However I see this as self defeating going by how many people on the facebook selling pages are getting rid of all their models as they are no longer interested in the hobby due to costs...

If your hobby is making the biggest pile of cheap RTR ever seen, then loss of interest due to rising costs or reduced income is an inevitable risk. For myself, if all the RTR suppliers shut down tomorrow, my model railway would be no worse; and would remain fun to use for so long as I am fit to sit at the layout and operate it!

Are all the new RTR providers that have joined the party in the last few years deluded? They wouldn't be risking their cash if they thought that demand for RTR was crashing toward extinction.

D605Eagle wrote:...my local model shop says he thinks the hobby will implode sooner or later.

There will be all sorts of things happen, with the latitude afforded by 'sooner or later'. Ask for a date.

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Re: Real model prices?

Postby flying scotsman123 » Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:25 pm

Bigmet wrote:
D605Eagle wrote:...my local model shop says he thinks the hobby will implode sooner or later.

There will be all sorts of things happen, with the latitude afforded by 'sooner or later'. Ask for a date.


Rubbish! Looking at model railway magazines back to the '60s people have been saying that for 50 years, it just hasn't happened.
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Re: Real model prices?

Postby D605Eagle » Tue Nov 07, 2017 6:08 pm

alex3410 wrote:does this new revision of it still have traction tyres?

I don't think its any different than the last release a few years ago Alex. I've just ordered one, I'll let you know when it arrives.


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