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True Hobby Shops in Your Area?

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  • Member since
    March 2022
Posted by tony in china on Friday, April 8, 2022 1:33 PM

crazy prices there- they were good when they first started , used to have a great selection of kits including DML , I sometimes pop in when Im back in england , but its generally overpriced crappy starter kits with 60 year old molds and a few tiny pots of paint , not even enough to basically finish a plane . however its ok to grab a few tins of paint and glue etc . I remember the one in MK sometimes used to have half full racks of paints and other times full up , obviously couldnt plan it well. however its better than having nowhere to get paint.........

  • Member since
    March 2022
Posted by tony in china on Friday, April 8, 2022 1:15 PM

remeber the days - martins the newsagent used to sell Matchbox kits , Woolworths used to sell airfix and even the local hardare shop at the top of my road used to sell kits , glue and paints . And the 3 toyshops in the town centre, I lived in a small town , all used to sell kits, even some tamiya fujimi that no kids could afford then

  • Member since
    January 2014
Posted by Silver on Tuesday, April 5, 2022 12:33 PM

A true plastic model shop is located in Washington state called Skyway hobby shop.They have everything.You name it and they got it.Google it.Tones of aircraft and armor models.All model building tools and paints.(everything).

  • Member since
    August 2021
Posted by goldhammer88 on Thursday, March 10, 2022 3:27 PM

Well, the store that was in Salem (45 miles) closed up in January.  Had modified their hours about three months earlier due to lack of staffing.  Mid November, was temporarily closed due to illness, mid December had a going out of business sale, and closed for good on January first.  Suspect that the owner passed on after 30 years there.

Always stopped by to get something on my way back from VA appointments in Portland.

One closest has mostly RC, with a decent selection of car kits, not much in other genres.

Next closest is Tammie's in Beaverton.  But don't get by there much, but that's going to have to change, even if ten miles out of my normal travel route.

  • Member since
    December 2021
  • From: Northern Michigan
Posted by Monogram Madness on Sunday, January 16, 2022 1:34 AM

There is a hobby shop in St. Ignace near me but its very much a RC store with almost nothing in plastic and very little in the way of supply.  Not worth stopping in for a scale builder. Fortunitly there is a Hobby Lobby in Sault Ste Marie, Petoskey and Gaylord and thank God for them.  They may not have a ton...but they have AirFix and Revell kits and thier prices are unbeatable.  They have supplies...albeit not much...but enough to get you through.  


What has suprised me after getting back into the hobby is that places like Walmart and Meijers no longer carry kits.  I used to buy kits and supplies there all the time in my youth.  

FWIW ive had GREAT customer service from Hobbylinc and they have made my re-entry easy peasy.  

Perfection is having fun and relaxing...not building the perfect model.  

 

On the bench:  Revell 1:48 Spitfire MKII and Monogram 1:48 P-40B

  • Member since
    June 2009
Posted by jimbot58 on Sunday, January 9, 2022 7:18 PM

I am lucky where I am at - I have several Hobbytown's here and each are a bit different. The closest is very much focused on RC and Gamers. Kit selection is ok but not huge. This one has recently been adding many lines of paint since the demise of MM, adding Vallejo, Ak Interactive, MRP, Revell, Mr. Hobby, etc. They also have paints for gamers, RC cars and planes, Gugdam and more.

The other Hobbytown has a decent line of paints, maybe a bit less than the first one, but I did see Humbrol paints there. The kit collection there is second to none (IMO) and the shelves are always stocked. The must be doing well as the last time I was there, they had new flooring, and new lighting that you almost need your shades for!

There are other HT's here in town but I don't know a lot about them as I have never visited. They could be typical HT's for all I know

*******

On my workbench now:

 

Fujimi F-4K Phantom "Yellow Bird" and Zvezda Su-27SM Flanker


  • Member since
    August 2021
Posted by lurch on Sunday, January 9, 2022 10:45 AM

In the area that I live we have no local shops. If I want to visit a decent shop  I need to drive about 2 hours to the twin cities. There they have several shops that are pretty well stocked with everything. There is Scale Model supply and 2 hobby towns and a few smaller ones that I dont remember there names but were pretty good when I was last in there.

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Sunday, January 9, 2022 6:28 AM

Trim Tab

Thanks for that info. Tojo.

I'm living in Salisbury, NC. Hickory is pretty close. I'll go check out that store.

 

The club meets the 1st Saturday of every month at 1000,might attend in February

I love Hap's Grill in Salisbury

  • Member since
    September 2020
Posted by Trim Tab on Friday, January 7, 2022 11:07 AM

Thanks for that info. Tojo.

I'm living in Salisbury, NC. Hickory is pretty close. I'll go check out that store.

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Friday, January 7, 2022 8:52 AM

Tojo72

Years ago a friend near Allentown took me to huge shop that also had a slot car track is that still there. 

Yes, Tojo!  That's Trains & Lanes, a little north of and between Bethlehem and Easton.  It's still there, going strong.  It's primarily a model railroad and RC shop, though yes, they have the slot car track, and an outdoor go-kart track.  They even have a batting cage on the second floor.  They have a good deal of supplies, such as paints and tools, for modelers, but their model selection is just a small part of their inventory.  Yes, they've survived the changes that have taken place over the past 50 years.

We have another old shop here in the Lehigh Valley, Tony's Hobby Shop in Coplay.  That's another small town north of Allentown.  It's apparently the oldest, continuously operating hobby shop in PA.  Today, it's Tony's son Gerry who runs it.  Another small shop, in a house on the end of a row.  Gerry's stock is about 50/50 between scale models and model railroad supplies. 

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    August 2021
Posted by goldhammer88 on Thursday, January 6, 2022 2:26 PM

Last time I was in the store in Salem, they had a decent selection of plastic, in a/c, cars, armor, and a few floaty things. He bulked up the Tamiya line of paint since MM went out.  Has a few of the Vallejo sets.

Was in the store in Corvallis a week or so ago....very few a/c, helo, armor kits.  Car and truck selection is way down as well. Few ships on the shelf, but they never stocked many.

Smattering of left over MM, said going to bring in Tamiya, but looks like they are phasing out plastic and going to be almost all R/C.

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • From: Land of Lakes
Posted by cbaltrin on Thursday, January 6, 2022 1:46 PM

I used to go to Andy's all the time when it was in San Diego / El Cajon area. Still have a few of his sanding sticks!

stikpusher

Here in Phoenix we have two definitely good Hobby shops, Andy's Hobby HQ & Hobby Depot, plus a couple more that I have yet to check out, and there are several Hobby Lobbies in the area. Not quite a feast, but certainly not a famine.

On the Bench: Too Much

  • Member since
    May 2004
  • From: Land of Lakes
Posted by cbaltrin on Thursday, January 6, 2022 1:17 PM

I used to go to Andy's all the time when it was in San Diego / El Cajon area. Still have a few of his sanding sticks!

stikpusher

Here in Phoenix we have two definitely good Hobby shops, Andy's Hobby HQ & Hobby Depot, plus a couple more that I have yet to check out, and there are several Hobby Lobbies in the area. Not quite a feast, but certainly not a famine.

On the Bench: Too Much

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Thursday, January 6, 2022 10:10 AM

the Baron

 

 
DooeyPyle67

Sadly the age of LHS across the nation are dying off every single day. My last LHS in my area closed up for good due to owner's retirement - 6 years ago...

 

 

The local hobby shop has been dying out for over 30 years, at least, and the example you cite is the biggest reason.  As the owners of the hobby shops we modelers in our 50s, 60s, and 70s visited got older, they retired, and found no one who wanted to take over their businesses.  There was a younger generation of owners, who ran into the same problem.

Add to that, that there were chains in some areas of the country-we had Allied Hobbies, here in the Mid-Atlantic area, for example-that competed against the smaller sole proprietor businesses, and the rise of the Internet, and those were additional pressures on those businesses that helped to accelerate the process.

And even being part of a chain, or being on the Internet, or both, isn't proof against a merchant's own ineptitude, too. We had a HobbyTown franchise here in the Lehigh Valley, for around 30 years.  It replaced an LHS that closed when the owner retired.  That HobbyTown thrived, but when its owner retired and sold the franchise, the new owner went out of business in about 18 months.  He had no head for it, didn't promote his store the way the previous owner did.  And Squadron provides an example of a business that adapted to changes over time, but eventually ended up with management that failed, and they had to close.

In the end, nothing lasts forever.

 

Years ago a friend near Allentown took me to huge shop that also had a slot car track is that still there.

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Thursday, January 6, 2022 9:50 AM

DooeyPyle67

Sadly the age of LHS across the nation are dying off every single day. My last LHS in my area closed up for good due to owner's retirement - 6 years ago...

The local hobby shop has been dying out for over 30 years, at least, and the example you cite is the biggest reason.  As the owners of the hobby shops we modelers in our 50s, 60s, and 70s visited got older, they retired, and found no one who wanted to take over their businesses.  There was a younger generation of owners, who ran into the same problem.

Add to that, that there were chains in some areas of the country-we had Allied Hobbies, here in the Mid-Atlantic area, for example-that competed against the smaller sole proprietor businesses, and the rise of the Internet, and those were additional pressures on those businesses that helped to accelerate the process.

And even being part of a chain, or being on the Internet, or both, isn't proof against a merchant's own ineptitude, too. We had a HobbyTown franchise here in the Lehigh Valley, for around 30 years.  It replaced an LHS that closed when the owner retired.  That HobbyTown thrived, but when its owner retired and sold the franchise, the new owner went out of business in about 18 months.  He had no head for it, didn't promote his store the way the previous owner did.  And Squadron provides an example of a business that adapted to changes over time, but eventually ended up with management that failed, and they had to close.

In the end, nothing lasts forever.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    August 2005
  • From: Seattle, WA
Posted by Surface_Line on Thursday, December 30, 2021 9:46 AM

I'm surprised that nobody in the Seattle area has commented, other than armornut from 300 miles away.  Agreed that the Seattle hobby situation has dwindled in the past several years.

Currently, our #1 best place is Skyway Models, in the south end of the area, about 30 miles from me.  Otherwise, there are Hobbytowns at Southcenter, Redmond and Everett, and Broadway Hobbies, a small shop in Everett, up into the very north end which has a small footprint for railroad, RC and plastic models.  A few Hobby Lobbys and Michaels which may have the odd paint or something.

Last week when I wanted a bottle of flat blue paint I needed to make two trips - first checking places to the south, then the next day going up to the north.  It certainly ain't what it used to be.

Rick

  • Member since
    December 2021
Posted by HongFPV on Monday, December 27, 2021 3:55 AM

STFD637

After taking several years off from the hobby I am looking to get back in. One thing I have noticed over the years is the slowly dwindling number of physical shops. I miss being able to physically look at the kits, talk to the owners, etc. My one local shopw that I would call a TRUE hobby shop closed. We have Hobby Lobby (which can work in a pinch), but the other "shop" in town is very RC related with som Tamiya paints and a small selection of models.

I have also noticed the adds in the back of FSM getting smaller and smaller over the years. Just curious how it is where you live? I am in SWFL BTW. It seems that the UK and Autralia seem to have a strong contingent of hobbyist (at least on YouTube)

 

Regrettably, there is no offline RC hobby shop in our town. But now the Internet is very developed, and every time I buy some cost-effective 6s lipo batteries online, as well as some parts.

  • Member since
    January 2012
  • From: Cincinnati, OH
Posted by DanR1967 on Friday, October 8, 2021 4:18 PM

I'm still pretty blessed here in the Cincinnati area, having Hamilton Hobbies, Hobbytown USA, and Hobby Villa (right over the border in Kentucky) close by. That being said, since moving here, we did lose Boardwalk Hobbies, Pit Row Hobbies, and Tim's Trains in just the past 2-3 years. I'd hate to lose another one.

Dan

https://danr67.imgur.com/

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Tuesday, October 5, 2021 10:12 AM

No, none.

There's one up by San Francisco in the City of San Carlos, but that's 100 miles from here. And why pay full retail?

 

Bill

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Tuesday, October 5, 2021 9:50 AM
That's a pretty nice and a pretty rare situation you got there.

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Derry, New Hampshire, USA
Posted by rcboater on Tuesday, October 5, 2021 8:22 AM

Here in the metro Boston- Southern NH area, I am very fortunate- I have quite a few shops around:

- A (typical) Hobbytown USA 2 miles away.  Not a lot of plastic, but the close by for paints, glues, etc.,  and RC bits for my RC scale ships.

- Midgard Hobby and Games-  A great gaming store about 4 miles away. Lots of Warhammer 40K and other miniatures stuff, with a terrific selection of acrylic paints and other supplies.  Started to carry some plastic, too..

- ABC Hobbies in Salem, NH. (15 min away) RC shop, primarily planes and cars, some plastic.  Lots of RC parts for my ships. Next door to a terrific  bakery- a very dangerous place!!

- The Comic Store, Nashua, NH.  (25 min) Big Gundam and collectibles place- largest collection of Gunpla kits and supplies I've ever seen.  

- Hobby Emporium in Tyngsboro, MA. (25 min)  Huge plastic and trains place.  

- Spare Time Shop, Marlboro, MA.  (60 min) All plastic shop with great selection.

- Hobby Bunker, Wakefield, MA.  (60 min)  Gaming and Military hobbies.

Bonus:  Both HobbyWorld USA and ScaleHobbiest.com are located nearby- and both allow local pickup of orders!   I saved a bunch when I outfitted my bench with the hobbyzone organizers.

 

Webmaster, Marine Modelers Club of New England

www.marinemodelers.org

 

  • Member since
    January 2013
Posted by seastallion53 on Tuesday, September 21, 2021 6:34 PM

There are no true hobby shops in my area just a an RC shop with a sprinkling of models and supplies.

  • Member since
    September 2021
Posted by DooeyPyle67 on Tuesday, September 21, 2021 2:44 PM

Sadly the age of LHS across the nation are dying off every single day. My last LHS in my area closed up for good due to owner's retirement - 6 years ago. All is left are Hobby Lobby and Micheal's. Even those stores are not really "true" hobby stores to cater to the hobbyists such as ourselves. 

Sure they'll have model kits but not a wide variety kind nor the tools/paints. Pretty basic stock mostly. There aren't too many within an hour's drive except for one over 2 hour's drive from me -  near my sis-in-law's town. Went there once and I had a field day there for an hour. LOL!! I'm hoping to get back there soon since it has been over 3 years since I've stopped by.

  • Member since
    July 2014
  • From: Franklin Wi
Posted by Bakster on Sunday, September 19, 2021 8:54 AM

Glamdring

 

 
Bakster

 

LOL! RIGHT? I can't imagine how.you can navigate the store in a  wheelchair. Seriously. Last time I was there I was stepping over boxes trying not to fall. And yeah, always walk out with something.

I asked the owner if he is considering a  new location. He said yeah, but he is trying to stay in the waukesha area. There is the rub. Cost to do so.

 

 

 

Thankfully the model aisles are typically clear, I just have to plan every turn before making it.  Don't want to end up like Austin Powers:

 

It's a great location, I just hope if he ever does get around to moving it isn't to downtown Waukesha.  Always get lost there!

 

Lol. Great Gif that captures the spirit of the store.

I am with you about downtown Waukesha. I avoid it for the same reason.

Yes. The current location is a good one. It just needs to be bigger! Every inch is crammed. They could also install better lighting. The HobbyTown in West Allis moved to a bigger store and what a difference. Wider isles, lower shelves, and much better lighting. If you ever made it to Greenfield Hobby before it closed it has that same feel. Not as good as, but approaching it.

  • Member since
    February 2005
  • From: Nashotah, WI
Posted by Glamdring on Friday, September 17, 2021 9:08 PM

Bakster

 

LOL! RIGHT? I can't imagine how.you can navigate the store in a  wheelchair. Seriously. Last time I was there I was stepping over boxes trying not to fall. And yeah, always walk out with something.

I asked the owner if he is considering a  new location. He said yeah, but he is trying to stay in the waukesha area. There is the rub. Cost to do so.

 

Thankfully the model aisles are typically clear, I just have to plan every turn before making it.  Don't want to end up like Austin Powers:

 

It's a great location, I just hope if he ever does get around to moving it isn't to downtown Waukesha.  Always get lost there!

Robert

"Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." 

  • Member since
    July 2014
  • From: Franklin Wi
Posted by Bakster on Friday, September 17, 2021 4:29 PM

Glamdring
That's for sure, I love going there and always come out with something, but I can't access half the store in my wheelchair.  I am amazed they haven't been hit with some kind of fire code violation

LOL! RIGHT? I can't imagine how.you can navigate the store in a  wheelchair. Seriously. Last time I was there I was stepping over boxes trying not to fall. And yeah, always walk out with something.

I asked the owner if he is considering a  new location. He said yeah, but he is trying to stay in the waukesha area. There is the rub. Cost to do so.

  • Member since
    February 2005
  • From: Nashotah, WI
Posted by Glamdring on Friday, September 17, 2021 4:12 PM

Bakster
 

Hiawatha Hobbies Waukesha. Lots of models, train stuff, you name it. They stock a lot of different stuff including a good variety of hobby paints. This is a true mom and pop shop. They could do better with a bigger store. It is crammed. Some days you are stepping over boxes.

 

 

 

That's for sure, I love going there and always come out with something, but I can't access half the store in my wheelchair.  I am amazed they haven't been hit with some kind of fire code violation.

Robert

"Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm." 

  • Member since
    March 2007
  • From: Northeast WA State
Posted by armornut on Friday, September 17, 2021 3:42 PM

   No disrespect to your wife Johnnyk but that place looks like....HEAVAN.

we're modelers it's what we do

  • Member since
    July 2014
  • From: Franklin Wi
Posted by Bakster on Friday, September 17, 2021 3:35 PM

Hey Tom. south of you the following:

Model Empire in West Allis. Mostly car models, die cast, but some scifi. planes, ships, armor. The place has the smell of old models. Oh and they have a slot car track.

HobbyTown West Allis. Not a mom and pop shop but they have a lot of everything. Big on RC and they even have a dedicated area for RC car racing.

Hiawatha Hobbies Waukesha. Lots of models, train stuff, you name it. They stock a lot of different stuff including a good variety of hobby paints. This is a true mom and pop shop. They could do better with a bigger store. It is crammed. Some days you are stepping over boxes.

 

 

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