Special Edition ASK Cubby, Version- I Ask The Questions, You Give The Answers
Welcome to this week’s Special Edition of ASK Cubby. This week I am the one asking the questions and you freaks are the ones doing the answers. Here we go…
(I answered one of Bob’s questions a few weeks ago in ASK Cubby)
“Dear Bounce’n Bobby From Germany,
Yes, in America Robert can have the nickname “Bob”, or “Bobby”.
Oh and, thankfully our slackers in shipping got ya your sticker pack. 🙂
So yo, have you seen rc gear in Germany that we (BigSquidRC) are not covering? What brands are popular in Germany right now? How does the hobby seem to be doing in Germany right now, does it seem more or less popular than lets say, ten years ago? How are you local hobby shops doing? What about attendance at local tracks?
You know me, I like to pick brains and learn more about consumer habits.
Robert From Germany- Hiho C,
Obviously it´s my turn now with answering ur questions.
So yo, have you seen rc gear in Germany that we are not covering?
In my opinion u cover pretty much what’s up to date. There might be something missing but I can´t recall it right now. So it can’t be that important.
What brands are popular in Germany right now?
In my opinion Traxxas is doing big time over here at the moment. Arrma, LRP and HPI also. And those Crawlers from Axial. But be warned, I´m only a private basher not a racer, so there might be other opinions on that topic. But those are the cars that are driven in my surrounding. 10-15 years ago before the HPI Savage boom it was mostly Kyosho, Tamiya (1:10,1:8) and Gröschl. (1:6,1:5)
How does the hobby seem to be doing in Germany right now, does it seem more or less popular than lets say, ten years ago?
Because of the RTR and Brushless technic I would say on a private level there are quite a lot more RC cars on the fields and streets than 10 years ago. The Nitro/Petrol Drivers decline a bit. But that´s more about that there are problems in driving them over here except on a race track. Most people are annoyed by them and in case something happens u have no insurance when u r not on a track.
How are you local hobby shops doing?
Ouh, hard topic. Like in every other part of shopping I would say that u have to go online to survive. In my area (10-15 years ago) there were even 3 RC Shops in our next small town. (25.000 inhabitants and 6 kilometers away from my home.) Today I´ll have to drive at least 50 Kilometers to the next good RC shop. But considering what is available online those shops aren’t really that good. 10-15 years ago when I needed a spare part for my Tamiya Stadium Thunder I would had to go to a bigger shop around 50 kilometers away. Because the smaller ones wouldn’t order small spare parts for u. Then they put u on a list with ur part because they have to wait until a big container comes over from Japan. So u had to wait for at least 2-3 month until ur part was here. So when something was broke ur summer season was pretty much done. Today u put the part number into Ebay and probably in 2 days pretty much everything is at ur home. So u can drive on the next weekend. So, all the little shops are gone. In the bigger cities u still have some shops with a limited amount of cars/parts, etc. Then, there are quite a couple of online shops where u can pretty much order everything. But i would say for Germany there are 4-5 really big ones and a lot more smaller/specific shops. But we had here in Bremen (560.000 inhabitants and 50 Kilometers away.) a pretty good local and online shop with really good prices that went broke last year anyways. So I would say most of shopping goes online. A lot of people even order their stuff directly in the US or from China. Depending on the $ and €.
I ordered 2 540er Motor Cooler directly from China over Ebay a couple of days ago. As per picture it is the same part that I could have ordered from a shop here in Germany. But 13,99€ in Germany, plus 4,90€ shipping costs. So it is 18,89€ for one cooler. From China two coolers including shipping cost 9,98€. Nearly ¼. U have to wait 3-4 weeks but over Paypal u have at least some kind of insurance if something goes wrong. Not really a warranty but for ¼ of the price u have to take at least one risk.
RC is quite a nice hobby here. So like one of my other hobbies. (amateur radio) Same there, way less local shops over the last decade and more and more on-line shopping.
What about attendance at local tracks?
So, as I´m not a racer I can´t really tell u. But from my “Internet experience“ I would say that they have to suffer a bit. Like the tracks for 1:5ers. Or I could say everything that is Nitro- or Petrol powered suffers a bit. Because it is loud and noisy and so on. There are a lot of restrictions over here if u want to build a racetrack.
A good friend of mine wanted to build a track with some of his friends in one of our grassland areas. But he wasn’t allowed to because of the environment protection. They would disturb the cows and birds in that area. And we are talking here about E-Cars. Not even Nitro/Petrol. What I see is that there are a couple of really “pro” tracks around with probably the hardcore drivers that drive there 10+ years. And also a couple of I would say private tracks with a small group of people that need a place to bash and race agains each other. So there might be a difference between the racers and the bashers. Because not every one who buys an RC is willing to go to a “real track” because of the restrictions and costs. (This and that car, only those tires, etc.)
Hopefully u can understand my English essay. Had to look up some words. If u have other questions on ur mind where u think I can help u out with just write. Kind of cool to write to someone in English and try to better my English skills. And learn new habits, vocabulary and expressions. Thx a lot for that.
(This is from an email chain with a person that works within the industry, posted with his approval of course.)
Hey Mr Industry Guy,
So ya, I know you hate my stance concerning on-road racing, but if it was up to you, what could your company do to get on-road tracks busy again?
Hugs & Kisses,
Mr Industry Guy- It isn’t that I hate your stance, I just don’t believe any local track could keep a Spec class bone stock for more than a couple of weeks. The problem with XXXXXX (the company Mr Industry Guy works for) doing more to support on-road racing is money. On-road cars don’t sell and have not done so in many years. My bosses will not approve spending towards anything on-road because all they see is zero ROI and pallets of product that we can’t even give away. To get approval towards on-road spending we would first need to see a demand for it on the consumer side. Which then brings up the question of which came first, the chicken or the egg? How do we created a consumer demand without spending marketing money??? Or spending a bunch of cash on new cars???
Mr Industry Guy
So there ya have it folks, I will be awaiting my stickers for providing the questions this week (LOL). But seriously, next week I will be picking a “Letter of the Month” so get those questions/emails in. thecubreportrc at gmail dot com is the addy ya want.
YOUR Cub Reporter