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JK Products major update


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#26 Wizard Of Iz

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:41 PM

When SCR&H was open, we coached our racers to buy from us. And, we were blessed to have a strong core of local racers who created positive peer pressure for other racers to buy locally instead of online.  

 

No... I'm not naive enough to think that all of our racers spent 100% of their racing dollars with us. But we made it possible for our racers to buy from us by keeping the parts wall well-stocked with everything they needed to race the classes that were part of our program. You can't sell what you don't have! Those raceways that don't keep their wall well-stocked have nobody to blame but themselves for lost sales as they've left the racer no option but to buy elsewhere. 

 

I believe that a far bigger problem than distributors selling to re-sellers is manufacturers selling directly to individuals – and often at a discount. When that happens, there's no reason for the racer to ever buy from his raceway at full price.

 

By the way... I rarely faced any delay in getting parts from the distributors. Crawley is in Florida so everything I ordered from them on Monday morning was in our shop on Tuesday. Eagle and ERI are a few states away, but everything that I ordered from them on Tuesday morning was in our shop no later than Friday – and it often showed up on Thursday.  

 

And I appreciate the gesture of JK sending 15% of direct sales to a designated raceway and hope that catches on... however... if the racer buys the product from the local raceway, then the raceway gets 40%. Why not just refer the racer to their nearby raceway?

 

For example... there's currently no track in Jacksonville so I buy parts from the other in-state tracks. If I switched and bought my JK tires, chassis, and bodies directly from JK, those tracks will only get 15% instead of 40%.  


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#27 Tim Neja

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:45 PM

Actually Tim, I've been made aware that Scott does have a track at this time. It's a Bob Scott track for his racing program. I haven't been there physically in a couple of years so I didn't know that.

 

I do buy from Scott – because his stock is second to none –- and our local raceway will not stock adequate parts for us to race with many times!!! I've had to buy from Scot because we've had a major race coming up and our local track does not stock what I need to prepare. And Scott at PCH has always come through!! Thinking this move by JK is going to hurt PCH I believe is wrong – because there are a lot of racers that would not be racing if it were not for Scott!! As some others' have pointed out,  our local raceway is not good at stocking what we  need. So they are hurting themselves, not the other way around!! I buy all I can from my local raceway, but more often than not, when I try, the products I'm looking for are not there. 

 

FWIW


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#28 Cheater

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:46 PM

And, honestly, if winning a slot car race is centrally involved in your personal self-image or your feelings of self worth, you're a part of the commercial raceway industry's issues. A harsh opinion, but I do feel it's the truth and why the commercial slot car racing 'industry' is in the shape it is in in 2017.

 

I feel the flames coming on... LOL!


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#29 Samiam

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:49 PM

Let's just remember that all the distributors have a clause in their ToA that limits sales to actual commercial raceways. If this was enforced in any manner, Tim would not have gone this route. The distributors who sold to unqualified resellers, violating their own terms, set the tone. They shat the bed. Now they got to sleep in it. 

 

As far as selling direct to the racer, maybe limit it to racers with no track within say... 50-75-100 miles? And to John Stewart's comment about being "racer" centered, I think the term racer is used generically as any slot car enthusiast. Maybe call us "slotters"?


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#30 tonyp

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:54 PM

I think the TOA is long defunct.

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#31 Matt Sheldon

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:54 PM

So the real message should be a "no mail order policy" as that is the message JK is delivering.

 

What stops a track from becoming an "authorized" JK raceway and simply having a full on mail order company that compliments it? What is the difference at that point from them and the perceived "bad guys".

 

One thing to add is that the couple times I was forced to order directly from Parma, the orders were shipped from stocking raceways I had no idea existed. I always thought it was cool that they gave them the business.


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#32 Half Fast

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:55 PM

Both PCH and Prof Motor have served the slot hobby for many years, supplying hard to get and otherwise unavailable parts with fast service. To lump them in with various fly by night operators is IMHO unfair.

 

To cut them off from an important product line may severely harm their business. If that happens it will be to the detriment of the hobbyists, the business, and to JK products.

 

YMMV.

 

Cheers,


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#33 PCH Parts Express

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 07:05 PM

Tim Neja, PCH has a commercial track with Trackmate timing and scoring made by Bob Scott that is used for parties, races, and rentals. Track time is for sale and you can come and race. Thank you for the kind post 


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#34 JK Products

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 07:26 PM

Tim Neja, PCH has a commercial track with Trackmate timing and scoring made by Bob Scott that is used for parties, races and rentals. Track time is for sale and you can come and race. 

 

4. an active slot car program (you can’t just own a track to do online sales)


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#35 Samiam

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 07:26 PM

I think the TOA is long defunct.

 

Sorry,  ToA... Terms of Agreement. I should have just spelled it out.

 

The fact that there is no Track Owner's Association says a lot.


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#36 PCH Parts Express

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 07:39 PM

PCH has our fall/winter race schedule below. 

 

Tuesday:  6 PM  NASCAR

Thursday:  6 PM  GTP


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#37 Mark Wampler

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 08:21 PM

PCH has served me well. Super extensive stock, prompt delivery, good packaging. This decision does have a big impact for those who have enjoyed Scott’s service.


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#38 Mattb

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 08:29 PM

Lot of points of view. Trying something new is a good thing. It's just a rough situation. The raceway doesn't pull in the $ to keep a huge inventory, so you have to go to someone who who does and that is a well-stocked company doing retail sales and making good profits to continue to buy and stock everything. Of course, this keeps the profits away from the track who has limited parts in stock. Tough problem to make everybody happy.    

 

I appreciate all these guys that make and sell products to keep us going. I also appreciate the guys that like Scott and Andy that work hard to have what we need when we need it, and ship it quick and safe. I wish there was an easy solution for the whole industry.


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#39 Phil Hackett

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 09:18 PM

Sorry,  ToA... Terms of Agreement. I should have just spelled it out.
 
The fact that there is no Track Owner's Association says a lot.

 
You had to be at the meetings to understand why it failed despite the efforts of many. Herding cats is always impossible.
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#40 Rob Voska

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 09:24 PM

It seems if a new product (chassis, guide, motor, body, magnet, leadwire, braid) comes out everyone wants one. Untested, gotta have it, givemeonegivemeonegivemeone. Because racing is about advancement, moving the ball forward, new is better, faster, stronger. The hell with the old and in with the new. But in all that haste the beginner was totally forgotten about by the hardcore "racers" and the never-ending "hot part" of the month club. 

 

Now an obsolete distribution system that is antiquated and full of flaws gets a new modern twist and it's rejected like a bent axle before it's even tried. Racers that embrace change now reject change... Interesting...  very interesting...


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#41 Rick Moore

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 09:38 PM

$0.02…

 

Not sure how this one will play out over the short-term or long-term. I can see a lot of facets to this one, and points that can be made on all sides…

 

Admittedly in all honesty, my own opinions and experiences are similarly mixed…

 

The reality of internet sales has created a new dynamic in consumer product retail services that goes far beyond slot cars and commercial raceways. Ask any former local record/cd store, electronics store, book store, or hi-fi equipment store, just to name a few I miss; and though I miss them, I avail myself of the internet to replace that loss of local outlet. The current survivors are the ones who have been able to adapt to this new internet sales dynamic, and even that won’t guarantee success. A large “one-stop shop” inventory, web page design, ease of purchase, competitive pricing and shipping options, return policies, and customer service are tantamount to just being able to start to compete for sales. No longer bound to the “nearest” store for products, consumers now avail themselves of all web retailers across the entire nation, and around the world.

 

This never boded well for the local commercial slot car raceway. Slot car enthusiasts, like all other product consumers, have found the great convenience of online ordering and home delivery. Any attempt to put this genie back in the bottle will be futile. For those slot car geeks who live 30 minutes, an hour, two hours, or even greater distances and time away from their “local” raceway, if there even is one, these online sales have been a major contributor to their staying in the hobby.

 

For me there was one time when not only were there no raceways within hours (which has happened a few times), but circumstances of much greater significance within my personal life would have prevented my visiting them even if they had existed. It was during that period I found PCH on-line and first ordered from Scott (the inventory and customer service were first-rate, and continue to be such). Most likely I would have given up on slot cars during that period otherwise. Instead, despite not being able to go anywhere to run my cars, much less race, it allowed me to enjoy those brief hours late at night, after all the chores of the day were over, giving me a chance to unwind and destress in preparation for the next day…

 

There was also a time when JSCG was the only “raceway” on the FL west coast. Two tracks, non-commercial, on private property, nor was this a club, with limited-to-no inventory, and after John’s death we only continued to run our cars there (no official race program, but we had races sometimes…) by the graces of his widow, Nancy. If not for online sales, none of us would have had the supplies needed to go there just to play with our cars…

 

All that said, I also understand the importance of supporting that local commercial raceway when there is one, regardless of any consideration for the typical life expectancy. I’ve lost count of how many have come and gone down here in FL-West over the last 20 years or so… almost as many as the girlfriends and wives… hmmmm… maybe it’s me…

 

In the meantime, I’ll keep an open mind on this subject and continue to observe the points and concerns of others while, as I said before, seeing how this plays out…

 

Rick / CMF3


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#42 gatormark

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 05:22 AM

There is a guy who sells direct to racers,hes presently moving from Calif to Texas; ya'll know who he is. While I believe he is a honest Christian man he himself has said (track owners are going to hate me) for selling this low. There are also companies like O/S and RTR who will sell to you direct, no dist, no track owner needed... not good. Now if they sell at list and you're willing to pay that, fine.

 

Our business sells direct to end users only at list price! If we are caught undercutting our retailers we loose the vendor, period, and there are plenty out there who would love to have our line. I tell end users in the field, yes, I can sell to you at list, you may want to check the local retailers as they normally give 10 to 15% off. The product avg price is $1,500 so it serves them to shop. We still get the same commission.

 

If the e-Bayers and online shoppers don't support the track this deal is done. I'm soooo tired of preaching this to people.


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#43 havlicek

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 06:36 AM

Look, this is all about competing interests:

- Racers want what they want, when they want it, and for the lowest price.
 

- Tracks want racers and retail dollars. They need this for their very survival.

 

- Manufacturers need to be profitable, or there will be no products for racers to use and others to sell to them.

Everything flows from the above.


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#44 American Adrenaline Spdwy

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 09:51 AM

I understand that the raceways need to survive, as I am a track owner, so i see this as a double-edged sword.

i see that you are offering free shipping on orders of 15 bucks or more to a raceway, when a click and ship minimum price is lets say 6 bucks how can you make any money on 15 dollar sales?

1) Selling direct to racers isn't cool period... I have overhead... this will ruin the industry.
2) I can stock all of your slot items if I wanted to; I just stock what i feel my racers will buy.
3) If the racers who buy direct from you aren't known how can we keep you honest with the said commisions?
4) What if said racers race at different tracks and like them all then only one raceway gets the commission. It becomes a popularity contest and it also forces tracks to discount the item.
5) Clubs, while they are cool for the racers who join, they take away racers and sales from the raceways.

If you really wanted to help out the tracks you wouldn't sell to anyone except the bona fide raceways that pay taxes and have overhead.  This type of thinking is what got us into this quagmire in the first place.


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#45 SlowBeas

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 12:02 PM

JK must do what it must do to survive. Plus, JK is offering tracks a piece of pie for doing nothing.

 

Tracks will not be required to stock large quantities of JK parts (although they'll want to have some quantities on-hand to satisfy on-the-spot demand). In my eyes, the tracks save $ on upfront inventory expenses while collecting a percentage of JK's sales. A win-win.

 

Next thing you know, tracks will start offering manufacturers a piece of their rental/race entry fees. Fair is fair.  :D  Just kiddin'.

 

Whatever it takes to keep these businesses alive, I support it. Tim is trying something new to help his business thrive.


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#46 JerseyJohn

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 12:39 PM

OK lets see if i have this right for me as a user of JK products..

  • The raceway buys JK products directly from JK at a better price margin. Can buy in any quantity they want and don't have to wait till their order is big enough. 
  • Racers continue to get JK products at their raceway
  • Direct access to the manufacturer.
  • As I don't have a home track  (closest track is an hour away ) I can continue to purchase from the track I race at. If I can't wait, I can buy from tracks like HVR or PCH with online stores.
  • I can also as before if I wish, purchase directly from JK but, now with a new added benefit of directing a 15% credit to the raceway of my choice.
  • This system works for me because not having a home track, i can buy when i need to from JK and the track gets a piece where before they got nothing.
  • Tracks that don't have online sales could benefit from the 15% credit if chosen. 

OK, what am i missing?


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#47 Brinkley47

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 01:32 PM

I stand with PCH on this one. Scott has bailed me out on more than one occasion. I have even used Scotts website to show my local track what to order. I hope he is still able to carry the product line he was before.

I don't want to put in 5 different orders as a racer. I am sure racetracks would be even worse regarding the # of orders.

Business 101 - Make it easy to do business with you.

This doesn't feel "easy."
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#48 Bernie

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:03 PM

Not that it matters anymore but I too stand with PCH. I try to buy what I can at my local raceway but sometimes it is not possible. PCH has always given me great service. Hope they can weather the storm. :good:


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#49 jimht

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:16 PM

JerseyJohn said:"ok what am i missing"

 

Uh, the Distributors have historically been the big boys in the business, with more money tied up than any manufacturer or Raceway...and concurrently have been the biggest supporters of the Hobby. The question is not whether they can do without JK, but whether JK can do without them...we'll see.


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#50 JerseyJohn

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:49 PM

Jim whether we like it or not times have changed we get information in a second and we have a lot of options on how we purchase. That being said more and more manufacturers are cutting out the middleman and selling directly allowing him to be more competitive with their pricing. As I said this appears to be no loss for the raceways and yes it will have an impact on the distributors unfortunately this is the way marketing is going throughout the country and every way a imanageable Mac
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