Estes the toy manufacturer

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by CAStra » Thu, 24 Dec 1998 04:00:00



I was in Walmart today and decided to stroll through the models section to see
if there were any Marz Landers available, as I had read in a couple other posts
on RMR.  Lo and behold there was one on the shelf (so I picked it up of
course).

After looking the 'model' over I thought, "Boy, this ought to be in the action
figure isle next to the Star Wars figures".  ALL plastic ('cept for MMT) and
truly looking like a toy.  Just the right size for my son to put R2D2 in and
take him for a ride around the family room.  

I'm not crazy about RTF but I think it is a smart move for Estes.  I'm glad
that they have enough business savy to change with the marketplace.  A stable
Estes Industries does mean that they will be able (maybe not willing) to bring
back some older 'kits'.

My six year old will enjoy his toy Lander and will have something to bring when
his Dad launches his Saturn.  Maybe Estes can please everyone!

Chuck Straka

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Hilty Information Syste » Thu, 24 Dec 1998 04:00:00



<snippage>

Quote:
>I'm not crazy about RTF but I think it is a smart move for Estes.  I'm glad
>that they have enough business savy to change with the marketplace.  A stable
>Estes Industries does mean that they will be able (maybe not willing) to bring
>back some older 'kits'.

Well put Chuck!  I'm not a huge fan of all the RTF junk either, but
times have changed, and Estes has changed with it.  I'm lucky enough
to have kids that are interested in the construction of the model and
are able to understand that a well built model will hold up, and
perform better than one that was quickly, or cheaply made.  I'm also
lucky enough to have the time to spend helping them with their
construction techniques and questions.  But, for those kids who want
to enter the hobby whose parents both work, or the kids with the
Nintendo attention span, Estes is filling a niche.  Hopefully the
money they make off all the Wal-Marts will allow them to continue to
produce kits that are probably not huge sellers (Saturn V's, Mercs
etc.) but kits that this group enjoys greatly.
Tod A. Hilty  NAR #72099    
Hilty Information Systems

"I'm going to put the wheels of the bus back on... just in case"
   - BlankReg, Max Headroom: 20 Minutes Into the Future

"I speak for myself _and_ my corporation!  Deal with it!"
   - blankreg

   - remove nospam.ever, and replace with apk for reply

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Helen Rapoz » Thu, 24 Dec 1998 04:00:00


Quote:

> construction techniques and questions.  But, for those kids who want
> to enter the hobby whose parents both work, or the kids with the
> Nintendo attention span, Estes is filling a niche.  Hopefully the

Or those who have a hard time of building rockets but love to fly
them, or don't have room to construct them (mostly on the painting
phase).
 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Jerry Irvi » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00



Quote:

> Well put Chuck!  I'm not a huge fan of all the RTF junk either, but
> times have changed, and Estes has changed with it.  I'm lucky enough
> to have kids that are interested in the construction of the model and
> are able to understand that a well built model will hold up, and

What makes you think it is working?  Sell through seems to be dropping
based solely on shelf space and placement I have seen at mass retailers
Estes uses such as Wal-Mart, Toys R Us, and K-mart.

I could be wrong but rarely am.

Jerry

--
Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California USA

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Hilty Information Syste » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00



Chuck:

Quote:
>But, for those kids who wantto enter the hobby whose parents both work,
>or the kids with the Nintendo attention span, Estes is filling a niche.

I've _really_ got to apologize for this.  It occured to me that after
I posted the message, what I wrote might be interpreted as a
reflection on your beliefs and/or lifestyle.  It wasn't meant that
way.  Sorry if the comments were misinterpreted.

Merry Christmas, and I owe you a pack of D's!

tah
Tod A. Hilty  NAR #72099    
Hilty Information Systems

"I'm going to put the wheels of the bus back on... just in case"
   - BlankReg, Max Headroom: 20 Minutes Into the Future

"I speak for myself _and_ my corporation!  Deal with it!"
   - blankreg

   - remove nospam.ever, and replace with apk for reply

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Hilty Information Syste » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00



Quote:
>What makes you think it is working?  Sell through seems to be dropping
>based solely on shelf space and placement I have seen at mass retailers
>Estes uses such as Wal-Mart, Toys R Us, and K-mart.

I'm not saying it's working Jerry, I'm stating that they changed their
marketing strategy as any smart company would.  It's interesting to
hear everyone on this ng comment that Estes doesn't "re-release" this,
or Estes doesn't have the "quality in the kits they used to have".
I'm self employed, and I'm painfully aware that sometimes in order to
do what you want, usually you have to do what works.   I'm giving
Estes three cheers for marketing the kits they _know_ will sell to the
"masses" in order to allow me to get my Merc Atlas, or Saturn V, which
you and I both know 98% of toy buyers in Wal-Mart wouldn't _even_
consider.

I was with my son today in the Kent, OH Wal-Mart actually trying to
track down a Hoover for "The One Who Allows Father To Participate In
The Rocketry Hobby" (actually, she takes the best launch pixs I've
ever seen!).  First off tho' we _had_ to check the rocket section.
Yep Jerry, you're right, I was alarmed at all the RTF kits they had,
and the shockingly small amount of space those kits occupied.
My son's reaction:  "Jeez Dad, they're already built... forget this,
let's get Mom's present and then we can check out The Launch Pad's
website when we get home...".  I hope the denizens of this news group
are not a dying breed.  I know I've got a couple of kids that will
begin contributing here soon, and hopefully others (Reagan Yates comes
to mind.) will continue to keep things moving.  In fact, it's not
going to be the kit companies that keep this hobby alive, but its
enthusiasts.  Estes is doing the best that they can with the market
they have.  I wouldn't expect less.

Quote:
>I could be wrong but rarely am.

Um, this could be viewed as the straight line of the night, and in the
spirit of Christmas, I'll leave it at that...

Quote:
>Jerry
>--
>Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California USA


Tod A. Hilty  NAR #72099    
Hilty Information Systems

"I'm going to put the wheels of the bus back on... just in case"
   - BlankReg, Max Headroom: 20 Minutes Into the Future

"I speak for myself _and_ my corporation!  Deal with it!"
   - blankreg

   - remove nospam.ever, and replace with apk for reply

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by GCGassaw » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00


Quote:

>>I was with my son today in the Kent, OH Wal-Mart actually trying to track

down a Hoover for "The One Who Allows Father To Participate In The Rocketry
Hobby" (actually, she takes the best launch pixs I've
ever seen!).  <<

Uhh, I hope for your sake that's NOT supposed to be her Christmas present!  :-)

- George Gassaway

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Carl/Lisa Van Cam » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00


Quote:

> Uhh, I hope for your sake that's NOT supposed to be her Christmas present!  :-)

Amen, brother, dangerous waters here!  The only way I could get away
with putting a vacuum under the tree is to attach some diamond earrings
to the power cord.

Here's to safe shopping,
Carl Van Camp

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by CAStra » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00


Tod,

No offense taken.  Merry Christmas to you and your family also!

BTW, I live in northeastern Ohio also and will gladly meet you for those D
engines <g>...or maybe just to get together to compare notes, kits and have a
launch to enjoy the reason we even participate in this newsgroup!

Regards,

Chuck

Quote:
>Chuck:

>>But, for those kids who wantto enter the hobby whose parents both work,
>>or the kids with the Nintendo attention span, Estes is filling a niche.

>I've _really_ got to apologize for this.  It occured to me that after
>I posted the message, what I wrote might be interpreted as a
>reflection on your beliefs and/or lifestyle.  It wasn't meant that
>way.  Sorry if the comments were misinterpreted.

>Merry Christmas, and I owe you a pack of D's!

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Hilty Information Syste » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00


On Thu, 24 Dec 1998 07:28:36 -0600, Carl/Lisa Van Camp

Quote:


>> Uhh, I hope for your sake that's NOT supposed to be her Christmas present!  :-)

>Amen, brother, dangerous waters here!  The only way I could get away
>with putting a vacuum under the tree is to attach some diamond earrings
>to the power cord.

Oh no way!  We've been married 11 years, and I learned that lesson
early on!  That was the "utilitarian" gift.  The real one is a 10K
bracelet built with our 4 kids birthstones (jeez, Gretchens May 13th.
birthday _really_ sent the price up!).

Merry Christmas All!

tah

Tod A. Hilty  NAR #72099    
Hilty Information Systems

"I'm going to put the wheels of the bus back on... just in case"
   - BlankReg, Max Headroom: 20 Minutes Into the Future

"I speak for myself _and_ my corporation!  Deal with it!"
   - blankreg

   - remove nospam.ever, and replace with apk for reply

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Hilty Information Syste » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00



Quote:
>Tod,

>No offense taken.  Merry Christmas to you and your family also!

>BTW, I live in northeastern Ohio also and will gladly meet you for those D
>engines <g>...or maybe just to get together to compare notes, kits and have a
>launch to enjoy the reason we even participate in this newsgroup!

  Yep we abide up here in Mantua.  Just met Mark Recktenwald this
week.  I'm going to be doing a lot of consulting for Kent City in '99,
so our paths will probably cross quite a lot.  Looking forward to
meeting you also, and by the way, I am serious about the D's.

Merry Christimas!

tah

Tod A. Hilty  NAR #72099    
Hilty Information Systems

"I'm going to put the wheels of the bus back on... just in case"
   - BlankReg, Max Headroom: 20 Minutes Into the Future

"I speak for myself _and_ my corporation!  Deal with it!"
   - blankreg

   - remove nospam.ever, and replace with apk for reply

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Michael G Kar » Fri, 25 Dec 1998 04:00:00


<snip>

Quote:
>I was in Walmart today and decided to stroll through the models section to
see
>if there were any Marz Landers available, as I had read in a couple other
posts
>on RMR.  Lo and behold there was one on the shelf (so I picked it up of
>course).

>My six year old will enjoy his toy Lander and will have something to bring
when
>his Dad launches his Saturn.  Maybe Estes can please everyone!

>Chuck Straka

<snip>

After reading this I also ran to Wal-Mart to see what they had.  As I walked
up to the rocket section I thought all was lost.  The rocket section was
pretty wiped out.
Nothing new.....  But then I looked behind a starter set and I found the new
Jinx and the crazy orange Moondog.  No Mars Lander, but I expect to find
some after Christmas. The two I found are really neat looking!!

I don't care if they are RTF's.  The purple Jinx is for my 6 year old
daughter.  This will be her step up into packing her own chutes.  She
currently loads the engines, installs the igniters and sets them up on the
pad.  This will be HER rocket.  Besides
she really likes purple.

The Moondog is for me and my 3 year old boy.  The shape of this one is
awesome.
Classic 50's Sci-Fi styling.  A coat of silver paint would make it really
classic.  But I think my boy will like the orange.

I think RTF's have a place.  They are great starters.  They are great to
learn with for the beginners and if they do crash it doesn't hurt as bad,
because you didn't spend a bunch of time to build it yourself.

If someone wants to progress they will.  I don't think RTF's will hurt the
hobby as long as Estes creates the builder kits too.

While the kids enjoy theirs, I'll be playing with my Saturn V.  Can't wait
to fly that one!

Merry Christmas to all!

Michael Karp
NAR# 73514

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by BSUTTONH » Sat, 26 Dec 1998 04:00:00


Ditto here.. Except I would be the one vacuming..
 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by Jerry Irvi » Sat, 26 Dec 1998 04:00:00



Quote:

> After reading this I also ran to Wal-Mart to see what they had.
> I think RTF's have a place.  They are great starters.  They are great to
> learn with for the beginners and if they do crash it doesn't hurt as bad,
> because you didn't spend a bunch of time to build it yourself.

I would like to clarify my statement about RTF rockets.  I believe they
are a necessary segment to attract less "committed" customers, some of
which might later transition to "committed" customers.  However the
percentage of customers who stay committed when their first exposure is a
kit is much higher.

Although argueably the sheer numbers initially are lower.  I think Estes
has found over the years that the dollars from one-time only customers are
about equal to all of the multiple repeat customers combined.  This is a
sad statement of affairs as compared to the 70's where things were
essentially reversed.

Quote:
> Merry Christmas to all!

I concur.

Merry Jerry

--
Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California USA

 
 
 

Estes the toy manufacturer

Post by bob fortun » Sat, 26 Dec 1998 04:00:00


(snip of stuff)

Quote:
> Although argueably the sheer numbers initially are lower.  I think Estes
> has found over the years that the dollars from one-time only customers are
> about equal to all of the multiple repeat customers combined.  This is a
> sad statement of affairs as compared to the 70's where things were
> essentially reversed.

So what you are saying is that in the 70's, when things were reversed,
the dollars from multiple repeat customers combined were about equal to
the one-time only customers?

Quote:
> > Merry Christmas to all!

> I concur.

> Merry Jerry

And to all a good night! : )

Bob