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Old 02-06-2004, 09:31 PM   #61
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What we really need to lower foam prices is a boycott. It is not feasable, but if we could get everyone in the RC world to stop buying foam tires for a period of time, the price would have to go down. Again, it couldn't be done, but it would be cool. Right now, the companies have us wrapped around thier finger because they know that if we want to race ( which is an addiction for most of us) we will constantly need to buy tires. It's a need!! So, they are free to charge whatever they want, because there is no competion and we can't go outside and pick foam tires off trees!

There is some hope brought to us by EBAY. I know that some of those "cheap" tires on there work just as well as TRC's and JACO's etc. Put on some traction compound and they work all the same, well, at least at the track where I race. Which brings me to another topic, traction compound. Must we sacrafice wear life for 5 minutes of good traction? To get maximum grip a new coat of traction compund is needed every run and that shortens foam life drastically.

Let's boycott foams and see if we can lower the prices!
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Old 02-06-2004, 11:20 PM   #62
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I realize you guys have problems with tires but for the shops to stay in business they have to make money. And even if you think $20 is too much, compare it to the mark-up on bodies. The lexan used to make a touring car body might cost $.40 and they sell for roughly $20. The price of material for tires is definately more costly so why pick on tires. The fact is tire producers wouldn't make tires if they can't make a profit and a shop won't carry a product that they can't profit from.


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Old 02-07-2004, 12:16 AM   #63
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well, the big difference in your argument here is the processing of lexan versus foam rubber. most of us can glue foam to a wheel. i don't know anyone that i race with that can mold thin sheets of lexan into something resembling a car.

while the similarity is that we are, again, at the mercy of the manufacturer, i will pay someone to do something that i can't. and gluing foam to plastic is something i should be able to tackle.
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Old 02-07-2004, 12:35 AM   #64
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Seaball,
Your right not many people have access to a vacum mold. However the price of the equipment necessary for the 2 operations is simaliar because a tire company must specially design all there equipment for effeciancy. After all it would take me half a day to cut donuts, create combos like plaids, then mount, glue and finally true a set of tires. Companies like BSR are able to produce a set of tires much quicker and of higher quality than you or I could ever do. So if time is money how much is that half day you used up making your own tires really saving you? Would a small $10 saving really be worth it?
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Old 02-07-2004, 02:07 AM   #65
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I dont know about the prices of foams or whatever, but if you think your LHS is raping you as far as prices go, you have every right to order online. We have to work for our money that we buy the stuff with, the hobby shops should have to work to stay in business instead of scamming their patrons with high prices.

I used to race mini 4WD at this one hobby shop about 5 years ago when that was the only hobby shop remotely close to my house. I had started looking online at what all was available for those cars since my LHS was the only place I had seen them at first. I found some shop in Hawaii that had a motor I hadnt seen anyone try at my local track, so I ordered it offline and no one could compete. Then the store owner was asking me about it and how much I paid. I told him I paid $35 for it, and acted suprised that anyone would pay that much for a mini 4WD motor. Then I informed him all the guys I just beat bought their slower motors from him for $50. The owner of that shop pretty much sold everything at retail. And his selection sucked. Eventually one guy just bought a business license and started ording from wholesalers. He started his own club and rented a parking lot to race at every weekend. There were still the suckers that shoped at the hobby shop, but hardly any of the racers did. If the LHS isnt getting the racers business, they arent getting much business at all. Why would they when they can easily get better stuff cheaper from a guy selling the stuff in his spare time. In the end the store just ended up catering more to planes instead of cars since he lost out on his car market.

I can understand paying like 15% more at a LHS rather than mail order. But if your looking at paying retail or close to it at your LHS they are robbing you. If your LHS goes out of business then they go out of business. You can always start a club and organize parking lot races, or find someone with some land and build an offroad track if you have to.

Supporting your LHS is good, but blowing your paycheck on tires then crashing and not having the money to buy the parts for your car your LHS also marked up isn't good.
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Old 02-07-2004, 02:18 AM   #66
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Probably, for some people. How many tires do you need anyway. A half a day spent every so often is probably not too bad and might even be fun. If you run foams you probably have a truer anyway. Do you send your motors out to be cleaned, com cut and new brushes installed, broken in, etc. or do you do it yourself. Time is money, but you don't earn any money being a couch potato watching the TV. If instead you use this time to save money building tires seems to me you're ahead of the game. Of coarse if you'd rather watch TV, spend the extra money for pre-built tires - your choice.
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Old 02-07-2004, 06:03 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally posted by Cyclonus
I dont know about the prices of foams or whatever, but if you think your LHS is raping you as far as prices go, you have every right to order online. We have to work for our money that we buy the stuff with, the hobby shops should have to work to stay in business instead of scamming their patrons with high prices.

I used to race mini 4WD at this one hobby shop about 5 years ago when that was the only hobby shop remotely close to my house. I had started looking online at what all was available for those cars since my LHS was the only place I had seen them at first. I found some shop in Hawaii that had a motor I hadnt seen anyone try at my local track, so I ordered it offline and no one could compete. Then the store owner was asking me about it and how much I paid. I told him I paid $35 for it, and acted suprised that anyone would pay that much for a mini 4WD motor. Then I informed him all the guys I just beat bought their slower motors from him for $50. The owner of that shop pretty much sold everything at retail. And his selection sucked. Eventually one guy just bought a business license and started ording from wholesalers. He started his own club and rented a parking lot to race at every weekend. There were still the suckers that shoped at the hobby shop, but hardly any of the racers did. If the LHS isnt getting the racers business, they arent getting much business at all. Why would they when they can easily get better stuff cheaper from a guy selling the stuff in his spare time. In the end the store just ended up catering more to planes instead of cars since he lost out on his car market.

I can understand paying like 15% more at a LHS rather than mail order. But if your looking at paying retail or close to it at your LHS they are robbing you. If your LHS goes out of business then they go out of business. You can always start a club and organize parking lot races, or find someone with some land and build an offroad track if you have to.

Supporting your LHS is good, but blowing your paycheck on tires then crashing and not having the money to buy the parts for your car your LHS also marked up isn't good.
That's capatalism for you. If my LHS doesn't care about me, I don't care about them and will take my money somewhere else. I think the prices for tires are outrageous, 20 - 30 dollars for a pair of small rubber and plastic parts. I can buy a good used tire for my real truck for 30 bucks.
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Old 02-07-2004, 06:19 AM   #68
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Default yup gotta agree w/ya

yea, its kinda maddeing, this LHS opened about 8or 9 months ago, im totally new to the hobby, (started w/ a tmaxx over the summer, got into the TC3 a couple months ago) and im really starting to see how bad this guy has ripped me off over the past few months. basicly almost everything he sells at FULL retail or more!! needless to say, he doesnt get any more busness from me other than small parts that he really cant mark up.
sad part is this guys got a really nice place happening, just killing his best customers
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Old 02-07-2004, 07:50 AM   #69
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You guys all have good points. I have no problem paying a little extra at my LHS but that's because the owners treat everyone well, and will help with a part if it doesn't work, or you help on how to fix it. It's these kind of places that you buy from to keep in business. Unless, like you have said, they up charge like ten dollars.
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Old 02-07-2004, 08:25 AM   #70
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WOW!!! What a thread!! ( as he steps up on his soapbox...... ) Foams are not cheap to manufacture. PERIOD. The mark up on them is more than it needs to be, but it's not completely out of line. No one ever takes into account the level of R&D involved, the complex manufacturing processes or the cost of the EQUIPMENT needed to mass produce QUALITY mounted racing tires. I have been racing for a LONG time, and foams have always been farily expensive, but still cheaper than those ridiculous rubber tires with their 400 possible inserts and 32 different wheel offfsets and stiffnesses.

I also have mounted foams in the past, and I will tell you that to me (and I'm poor), it's worth the additonal $3 or $4 bucks a pair not to have to deal with the mess and inconvenience. Mounting tires sucks!!!

Now on to my third and final point: YOUR LHS IS NOT RAPING YOU!!!!
I happen to know what dealer cost is on tires and it's more than $8.99 a pair, that's more in line with what distributors pay for them. Hobbyshops, especially those with racetracks, need to make money. Most of you buy your kits, batteries, and electronics online to save some cash, and hey to be honest MOST dealers don't make much at all on those "high-ticket" items. So what do the stores have to sell in order to make money.........

TAH DAH......... Consumables. Tires, Brushes, bodies, paint and parts. But hey, you could get all that stuff online too. It's just a damn shame we can't race these cars online though isn't it?

(steps down from soapbox......)
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Old 02-07-2004, 08:37 AM   #71
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i personally do not mind buying parts from a lhs. because of him i have a place to run everyweek. yes some parts may be expensive but you have to look at his overhead he has to pay! for example how many employees does he have? you have to look at his stand point workmans comp for them, medical,power heat(for guys running carpet) there are alot of variables for a owner to charge a little more.

if you do not like the price or selection of things you have a choice to buy it elsewhere. now if you lhs goes out of buisness where are you now going to run?

now presure2 you are probably talking about radical ricks or big boys toys. those places are HUGE! the amount of man power and power and overhead are pretty damm big. those guys are providing use a great favor with those places. if it wasnn't for those guys where are we going to run endfield? personallly do not like the 2 plus hour ride on the pike.

now for the foam buisness who cares would you rather pat 42 dollars for a set of foams. or sixty for the rubbers(tires inserts rims) just do not chunk them and true them once and ROTATE them side to side every run and CHECK CAMBER.

thats' my 2 cents
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Old 02-07-2004, 09:57 AM   #72
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One big part of charging retail is becuase in the summer season almost nobody runs indoor carpet. Basically they gets nitro guys and some 1/12th scales but 1/10 ele is almost dead there. I buy the consumables there year round(brushes $3 a pair, bodies $24, small parts) but I only buy tires there if I have to. Personally I still think over $50(including tax) for a set of tires is b/s. A set of tires for me lasts a good 1.5 to 2 months on carpet anyway(I don't true them down). In the summer months I order nitro foams from hk, they last ages and provide great grip. I can order one set with ems for $46, if I buy more sets is just cream on top. I've been trying to get them to work on carpet for a few weeks.

As for mounting your own tires, cypress is right, if you do what it says on the can it is a real pain in the arse and your tires come out looking like crap. I'm sure if you apply'd liquid mask to the rim face they would come out looking nicer though. Also I've only mounted one set before but I'm sure if you just scuff the rims, clean them, put the glue on and wack the tires straight on it would work ok, as long as you re-glue the seams down after they have dried. Having to dip the glued rims in laquer thinner kills the finish on the rims and creates a gooy mess.
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Old 02-07-2004, 11:12 AM   #73
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many good points. as was mentioned earlier, i still feel like it is more like a gang rape. the finger shouldn't just be pointed to the lhs. what is amazing to me is the very elemental processing that is involved from turning a sheet of foam into a donut, and eventually into a mounted and trued tire.

we are primarily running purples and plaids for sedan. the r&d has been done. and i'd bet it's been paid for many times over. we are not pushing the top companies to continue to research new materials, because we've been running these compounds for years now. either the industry has reached a perfect compound, or nobody has challenged either the process, or the material in an effort to bring the costs down. yes, there are less expensive compounds available, but as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. the "exotic" natural rubber performs better. that, or 90+% of hardcore carpet racers are too stubborn to switch. and that would sure say a lot for us, wouldn't it?

the wheels are injection moulded, could come in a variety of colors, and the same number of wheels as donuts are required to outfit a car. they are normally $6/pr. i keep staring at a pair of wheels in the left hand, and two foam rings in my right, truly amazed that what occupies my right cost me 2.5X that of the left.

why do two r/c companies get 90+% of the business? why do we have to pay the raw materials manufacturer, the finished product manufacturer, the distributer, and the hobby shop for foam rings? that is what strikes me as absurd. we do it for wheels, and somehow they still have managed to keep that price @ $6. maybe i should be thanking the industry leaders for that, instead of complaining about the other!

i am surprised that nobody has researched the successful compounds, and started a business, on providing low cost donuts straight to hobby shops and and users. like the infinite number of battery matchers out there that have to keep $'s in check to sell their product. perhaps the answer is that this foam rubber compound is that expensive and precious a material. but at this rate, it would have to cost $2000 for a 4'x4' sheet.

i dunno, everything progresses, and my intent with this thread, was not to make it a sounding board, but a place to collect useful ideas that would aid in putting money back in the racer's pockets.
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Old 02-07-2004, 11:50 AM   #74
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Mounting tires is not hard. $4 for a bottle of contact cement at the hardware store, a kimbrough tire horn and your doughnuts, and your in business. I mounted like 8 sets of 1/12 tires for Cleveland a couple years ago and they stayed on the rims better than the store bought tires I had.....
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Old 02-07-2004, 12:15 PM   #75
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RobK You know glueing and triming tires is alot of work and believe it or not you're not really saving very much....My 02 cent
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