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Squadron circling the drain?

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  • Member since
    January, 2006
  • From: Earth
Squadron circling the drain?
Posted by DiscoStu on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 11:00 AM

My online buying has tapered off in recent years, in no small part due to the disapproving glances from my wife.  In my online-ordering prime, however, I relied on three main US retailers:  Sprue Brothers, Great Models and Squadron.

Since that time, Great Models has become defunct and I find myself primarily ordering from Sprue.  This is mainly because when I go to Squadron they never have stock, their selection is limited, they don't seem to carry a wide range of products (Though if I ever wanted Trumpeter or Hobbyboss I know where to turn).  On the off chance that I do order something from Squadron, I find myself getting duped by the "IN STOCK (special order)" line where they offer a product only to turn around and say it's 2-3 weeks before it'll ship.  If that is the case then it isn't really in stock, now is it?

They seem to either be 1.) struggling, or 2.) dramatically changing their business model.  Is anyone else seeing this trend?  Just curious.

 

"Ahh the Luftwaffe. The Washington Generals of the History Channel" -Homer Simpson

  

 

  • Member since
    July, 2018
  • From: The Deep Woods
Posted by Tickmagnet on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 11:12 AM

Haven't used them since I as a kid. When I got back into this hobby last year I was going to use them but I read here or somewhere else that Squadron wasn't what it once was so I haven't used them. I use Hobbylinc.com most of the time and don't have any complaints with them. Good service, nice people, and most of my shipments are here within a week. I consider that good since I only use the postal shipping option.

 

 

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 11:16 AM

I gave up on the site some years ago. Their search feature is not very good. "No results found" for a lot of stuff that's actually there (if not in stock, lol).

I find the Amazon search so successful that I usually start there, and then go to the actual sellers store.

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: Fort Knox
Posted by Rob Gronovius on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 11:33 AM

Their monthly flyer decreased in saize this month, physical size that it. It's normally magazine sized, on par with my sports illustrated or VFW magazine.

Yesterday, my wife handed me the latest one and said, "Look, a mini squadron."

The early summer 2019 flyer is about half the size of a normal monthly magazine, it does seem thicker though.

  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Far Northern CA
Posted by mrmike on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 12:09 PM

Too bad about Squadron. I've stopped using them as well; too many sales that aren't really, lack of in-stock, and the very frustrating website. My experiences with Sprue Brothers and Scalehobbyist have been great, and I've ordered from Lucky Model with good service and delivery time.

 

  • Member since
    July, 2008
  • From: Vancouver, the "wet coast"
Posted by castelnuovo on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 12:38 PM

Haven't used them for years. I started with them but as the "not in stock" sign become more and more common, I switched to SprueBrothers, Hobbylink and Free Time Hobbies. 

  • Member since
    March, 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 4:19 PM
Yea,its been awhile for me,grabbed some items on a big sale a couple of years ago.Have not seen a catalog in awhile either.They never were my go to because of their search engine.Try Scalehobbyist also,good prices and service.

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 4:27 PM

Tojo72
Try Scalehobbyist also,good prices and service.
 

I think they are very good.

  • Member since
    April, 2019
Posted by BillG56 on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 4:31 PM

I agree with others, it's too bad about Squadron.  I have had excellent experiences with Scalehobbyist and Sprue, a so-so one with Kitlinx.  Someone mentioned starting their searches with Google.  I usually start mine using Scalemates, then proceed to DuckDuckGo if needed.  (DuckDuckGo won't sell your info.)

  • Member since
    January, 2006
  • From: Earth
Posted by DiscoStu on Tuesday, June 04, 2019 8:41 PM


Glad to know it’s not me.  Sprues Bros has been my go to as they always seem to have what I need and their service is excellent

 

"Ahh the Luftwaffe. The Washington Generals of the History Channel" -Homer Simpson

  

 

  • Member since
    December, 2003
  • From: 37deg 40.13' N 95deg 29.10'W
Posted by scottrc on Wednesday, June 05, 2019 4:35 PM

Ditto with what everyone else has said about Squadron.  They were at the top of the game when it was family owned, but now, well, I cannot see how they re going to make it with so much competition that seems to be better.  

I've been treated really well by Scalehobbyist. 

  • Member since
    March, 2013
Posted by patrick206 on Wednesday, June 05, 2019 7:34 PM

Scalehobbyist for me, USA Airbrush takes excellent care of my airbrush and parts needs. Haven't tried Sprue Bros yet, but will give them a try.

I really like Victory in Fla. for decals, masks, etc. Very good service and communications.

Patrick

  • Member since
    September, 2011
  • From: Stevens Point, Wisconsin, USA
Posted by Tom Hering on Thursday, June 06, 2019 6:03 AM

Hasn't Squadron always been a major distributor for hobby shops? Could the decline of hobby shops explain the decline of Squadron?

"A little more persistence, a little more effort, and what seemed hopeless failure may turn to glorious success" - Elbert Hubbard

"Perfect is the enemy of good" - attributed to Voltaire

  • Member since
    February, 2014
  • From: Michigan
Posted by silentbob33 on Thursday, June 06, 2019 8:51 AM
I've only had one issue with Squadron, and they took care of it for me. I don't order online a lot though. Squadron has also been good to me in that they help me out quite a bit with kits for my students when I order models for an elective class I've been teaching for the past few years. They're good in my book.

On my bench: Revell 1/48 P-51B Mustang

  • Member since
    May, 2013
  • From: Indiana, USA
Posted by Greg on Thursday, June 06, 2019 9:09 AM

Though I also have some discontent over the seemingly worsening lack of stock issue at Squadron, they have been good to me. One of the things I've liked about them is they don't mess around getting stuff shipped. Sometimes same day, never later than next day if ordered late in the day.

That said, I'm getting cheaper in my older age, and I'm more willing to wait a few more days for a better price elsewhere. Amazon really has me spoiled with their fast shipping.

I haven't ordered from Squadron recently, but I'm not ready to give up on them.

2 cents

-Greg

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: Fort Knox
Posted by Rob Gronovius on Friday, June 07, 2019 10:11 AM

I clicked on their email advertising a Father's Day sale. I just noticed they do not carry Dragon armor (didn't check other genres). That is odd because Dragon has literally the largest selection of armor models than any other model company in 1/35th scale.

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Friday, June 07, 2019 10:31 AM

Squadrons 1/35 armor seelction looks to have lots or Trumpeter/Hobbyboss stuff when I looked at their last sale earlier in the week. 

 

I have no real complaints of their service myself. I dont do much online ordering, just more bargain sale shopping on occasion. A few months back I picked up a 1/35 Hobbyboss LVTP-7 for an excellent clearance price.

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    June, 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Friday, June 07, 2019 11:05 AM

Hmmmm;

    I wouldn't say they are circling the drain . It just seems they have fallen off on a tangent .To Where? Who Knows? Last I ordered from them, was over two years ago . I now use the " Bay " T.B.

  • Member since
    March, 2003
  • From: Towson MD
Posted by gregbale on Friday, June 07, 2019 11:16 AM

Have had some fantastic bargains and uniformly superb customer service from them over the years.

That having been said, for the past several years I have largely been unable to put together an order for them since 95% of what I look for is either out of stock...'in stock soon'...or the infuriating 'in stock: available to special order.' [Seriously??? It's a binary choice...a thing is either in stock, or it isn't.]

Sadly, these days, it almost always isn't.

Greg

 George Lewis:

"Every time you correct me on my grammar I love you a little fewer."
  • Member since
    February, 2011
  • From: AZ,USA
Posted by GreySnake on Tuesday, June 11, 2019 9:47 PM
I used to order from them a lot. Shipping was always quick and since I was in New Mexico at the time delivery usually took three days. Always took advantage of the bargains that had.  The deals that had during black Friday were pretty good. More than a few times I took advantage of the 50% orders over $250 I believe.

The last time I placed an order was around 2012-2013. I can’t find anything that I really want as much of it is special order or at of stock. It’s really too bad. My father ordered from them in the 70’s so between the two of us we gave them business for fifty or so years.  

 

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