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True Hobby Shops in Your Area?

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  • Member since
    June 2009
  • From: Florida
True Hobby Shops in Your Area?
Posted by STFD637 on Thursday, June 17, 2021 5:12 PM

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)

"If a lie is told often, and long enough, it becomes reality!"

Travis/STFD637

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  • Member since
    September 2004
  • From: Denver
Posted by tankboy51 on Thursday, June 17, 2021 5:51 PM

We have Colpars in Denver.  I have been shopping there since 1976.   Now It's joined with HobbyTown.  It is real nice full hobby shop.  We also have several Hobby Lobbies around.  It is not like it was a few years ago when we had a lot of shops.  I'm sorry I dont know of many more.  I do not get around much anymore.

  • Member since
    April 2009
  • From: Longmont, Colorado
Posted by Cadet Chuck on Thursday, June 17, 2021 6:19 PM

We have one small Hobby Town here, which is pretty worthless.  Never see the owner to talk to, and the people who work there are just cashiers who know nothing about the hobby.  I buy everything on line now.

Computer, did we bring batteries?.....Computer?

  • Member since
    July 2019
  • From: Vancouver, British Columbia
Posted by Bobstamp on Thursday, June 17, 2021 6:49 PM

Vancouver scale modellers (and RC types) have Magic Box Hobbies in the neighbourhood of Kerrisdale, about a 15 minute drive or a 45 minute bus ride from downtown Vancouver. It's quite a large store with a very friendly staff. I usually deal with Wendy, who is apparently and exceptionally knowledgeable. The store is currently redesigning its website (http://www.magicboxhobbies.ca) so that won't be of much use at this time.

There is one other hobby shop that I know of, in the suburb of Burnaby. Perhaps another FineScale member can comment on that one.

Bob

 

On the bench: 1/500 Revell S.S. Hope, being built as the hospital ship U.S.S. Repose; Academy 1/72 F-86F Sabre, and a diorama to illustrate the crash of a Beech T-34B Mentor which I survived in 1962 (I'm using Minicraft's 1/48 model of the Mentor). 

  • Member since
    August 2014
  • From: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Posted by goldhammer on Thursday, June 17, 2021 6:52 PM

Have two, one 25 and the other 45 miles.  Borh are RC heavy, but generally have a somewhat decent selection of plastic.

Generally will stop by whenever I'm in their area, and buy something.

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Thursday, June 17, 2021 7:21 PM

The best we got is fairly well stocked Hobby Town in Asheville maybe 25 min from me.Lots of paint and supplies,a nice selection of kits at competitive prices.

About 70 min away in Hickory NC is another Hobby Town which is whole other story.The owner is very model oriented and allows the local club to meet there.His shop is stocked as well as any mom and pop shop I've been too.

Hickory NC also has great Aviation museum featuring some former Frontline aircraft.

fox
  • Member since
    January 2007
  • From: Narvon, Pa.
Posted by fox on Thursday, June 17, 2021 8:02 PM

As of now, the only place to go is Hobby Lobby in Exton. It's 1 hour from here. Personally, I think they have a small inventory geared towards young kids. Not much selection of kits or accessories. Use to be a good shop in Elverson a few years ago but the owner agreed with us that he made a bad choice for location. It was in an industrial park off the beaten path and hard to find. A couple of years after he opened, he couldn't make it, and closed down. Said he was going to open elsewhere but as of yet we haven't heard from him. There was a Hobby Town, decent inventory and very helpful in Sinking Springs (20 minutes away). They held 2 contests a year in a church across the street. The owner was retiring and no-one bought the place.  So, right now, it's Zippo. No other choice but internet.

Jim Captain

Stay Safe.

 Main WIP: 

   On the Bench:  Revell 1/96 USS Kearsarge - 70% 

I keep hitting "escape", but I'm still here.

  • Member since
    October 2020
Posted by rcguy on Thursday, June 17, 2021 8:52 PM

Have 2 large hobby shops within half hour drive from my house.

Both have a large selection of plastic models/paint and accessories.

 

  • Member since
    January 2021
  • From: Somewhere near Chicago
Posted by Teenage Modeler on Thursday, June 17, 2021 9:01 PM

In Northbrook Illinois there is a HobbyTown there. I've been there plenty of times, and it was a really good experience. Lots of kits, and Gundam kits, as well as some RC models as well.

No signature needed, just my head!

 

 

  • Member since
    October 2004
  • From: Orlando, Florida
Posted by ikar01 on Thursday, June 17, 2021 9:39 PM

In Orlando we have a Hobby Lobby and Colonial Photo and Hobby, which is probably the only actual hobby shop in town that I know of.  There is another hobby shop outside of Sanford but I have never been there so I can't say what it's like.

  • Member since
    July 2004
  • From: Sonora Desert
Posted by stikpusher on Thursday, June 17, 2021 11:23 PM

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.

 

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

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England
Posted by Bish on Friday, June 18, 2021 2:09 AM

We have a small one in my local town, Bury St Edmunds. Does a mix of R/C, trains and plastic models. I think we still have a lot of these smaller shops in the UK and i think thats largely down to the R/C and train crowd as they are able to speak to real people and get advice and i know our LHS does repairs on R/C models as well.

I am a Norfolk man and i glory in being so

 

On the bench: Hasegawa 1/72nd Typhoon FGR.4/Airfix 1/72nd Victor K.2

  • Member since
    July 2008
  • From: Albany, NY
Posted by jeffpez on Friday, June 18, 2021 5:42 AM

We haven't had a decent store in the Albany NY area in over a decade when Hobby Town closed. There's a dumpy train store that likes to pretend that it's a hobby store but it has a small selection that never changes and very little by way of supplies. Hobby Lobby mostly doesn't cater to my wants and I rarely go there. Thankfully I get two day delivery from Scale Hobbyist because they're not too far from here.

  • Member since
    November 2018
Posted by oldermodelguy on Friday, June 18, 2021 6:52 AM

We have one. Moderately stocked diversely between plastic kits, trains and RC. But he caters to three or four clubs in each category so he will order in as needed ( at a discount to those members or anyone else with no discount). He has on board the local ship builders club too, a big RC club and two train clubs. The owner is a military modeler so he can be a help. They have quite a few car kits. Testors and Tamiya paints. I'm wondering if they have even thought of replacing Model Master with another line of enamels. The owner has a stock pile of cases of MM enamels in his basement at home which kind of rubs me a bit since he doesn't mind announcing it and keeping it all for himself and can't take the surplus with him when he passes from this world to the next. But that's kind of history now, we just move on to other paints from other suppliers.

Paint ultimately in the end doesn't bother me all that much, I find a way, it's actually a hobby in itself to me and better than half my fun in models lol. Besides HL though, these guys are the only game around for a good and at least 50 mile radius with a bit of everything and connections to anything.. The owner is an enamel only guy and his long term assistant a Tamiya acrylic guy. Thus the two lines of paint.

  • Member since
    June 2021
Posted by rocketman2000 on Friday, June 18, 2021 7:12 AM

My closest hobby shops are all about a thirty minute drive.  There is a model railroad shop about twenty minutes away but they do not have much general stuff.  I do have a Michaels and a Hobby Lobby ten minutes away, thank goodness.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Friday, June 18, 2021 7:17 AM

Hmm; Let's See;

    We have three in San Antonio.One specifically Train related. The other I don't know. The third is well stocked, But the same distance as the other two to get too. 45 Miles from here.( New Braunfels)

     As far as I know there is one in Austin.( Kings) and I am not sure about that. It's been awhile siince I have been up there. 47 miles away from here( New Braunfels) For Both Cities the real Killer is Horrendous Traffic at all locations. And getting to them.

  • Member since
    February 2005
  • From: Nashotah, WI
Posted by Glamdring on Friday, June 18, 2021 7:57 AM

Have one 15 minutes away, primarily trains but they have a very good selection of models and supplies.  There Hobbytown is 30 minutes away, but have never been to it.  The one that was 5 minutes away closed several years ago.

Robert

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

  • Member since
    February 2005
  • From: Nashotah, WI
Posted by Glamdring on Friday, June 18, 2021 7:59 AM

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.

 

I have ordered from Andy's a couple times, haven't had a bad experience yet and his sales are generally competitive.

Robert

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

  • Member since
    July 2004
  • From: Sonora Desert
Posted by stikpusher on Friday, June 18, 2021 8:21 AM

Glamdring

 

 
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.

 

 

 

I have ordered from Andy's a couple times, haven't had a bad experience yet and his sales are generally competitive.

 

The funny thing about Andy's... until recently, the online store/stock was in another state. I went into the store one time looking to get something that I had seen on his website and was told of that- no in store stock of those items. I was a bit disappointed. Around the beginning of the year, they did get the online store moved here to AZ, but I don't recall exactly where. The shop itself is fairly compact, so it's not there...

 

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

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Massachusetts
Posted by ajlafleche on Friday, June 18, 2021 8:33 AM

From home:
Craftec East Windsor CT 15 miles

Hawg Heaven Sturbridge MA 25 miles

Time Machine Manchester CT 30 miles

Turn 4 Hobbies West Boylston MA 55 miles

Spare Time Marlboro MA 75 miles

Until a year ago, there was a shop about a mile from my house. The owner retired. I don't consider Hobby Lobby (won't shop there,anyway) or Michaels as hobby shops. 

 

Remember, if the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy.

  • Member since
    April 2019
  • From: Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
Posted by John 3:16 KJV on Friday, June 18, 2021 9:37 AM

For physical stores,

-HobbyLobby

-Michaels

-Certain antique shops

-This one military surplus store I know of

     “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

     For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”  - John 3:16-17

 

 

  • Member since
    November 2008
  • From: Hatboro, PA
Posted by Justinryan215 on Friday, June 18, 2021 12:17 PM

Here in South Eastern PA, I dont have much, my local "emergency" store is a hobby Lobby within a few miles from home.  They generally dont have much, but the 40% off sales they run bi-weekly, is enough to entice me on occasion.

The closest actual hobby shop, AAA Hobbies, is 45 minutes to an hour away, but I order from their "sister company" Megahobby.com more frequently.  Nothing beats walking in to a hobby shop though!

 

About four hours away, in Gettysburg, I found Gilberts Hobby Shop, which is focused mostly on model Railroading, but had a small but okay selection of kits (found the Hasegawa P3C Orion that I have been searching for there!), but its a large shop, with plenty of paints, glues, scenery and such, along with the model trains.  Next time I am visiting Gettysburg, I would love to explore that shop more!

"...failure to do anything because someone else can do better makes us rather dull and lazy..."

Mortal as I am,I know that I am born for a day.  But when I follow at my pleasure the serried multitude of the stars in their circular course, my feet no longer touch the Earth...

 

  • Member since
    July 2003
  • From: NEVER USE PHOTO BUCKET - IT'S A THREAD WRECKER.
Posted by disastermaster on Friday, June 18, 2021 12:28 PM

  • Member since
    May 2020
  • From: Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Posted by Deeve_ on Friday, June 18, 2021 12:31 PM

I live in Hamilton, Ontario. I am blessed with 2 extremely good hobby shops within a 10 minute drive. One is heavily plastic model oriented and the other is a little more train oriented. 

 

There are also a couple of shops that are more gaming oriented but sell paints and supplies and another that is online oriented that I have never been to. I feel like I am pretty lucky. We also have a Warplane museum with an IPMS chapter.

 

 In Progress.

1/72 Revell Arado AR-240-c2

1/72 Hasegawa Mitchell Mk.III RAAF

1/72 Italeri XB-70 Valkyrie

Deeve_

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Friday, June 18, 2021 12:41 PM

We have a couple old-school local hobby shops here in the Lehigh Valley.  They're nice to have, but really not necessary, today, with the Internet.  Not the way it was when we Boomers were kids.  The local hobby shop, that everyone pictures in nostalgic, sepia-colored tones, really was a product of that time.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    May 2020
  • From: North East of England
Posted by Hutch6390 on Friday, June 18, 2021 1:07 PM

There is a (very) small model shop in the nearby city centre, (20 minutes' ride on the Metro) with a pretty good range of kits, also catering for collectable diecasts & toys, but nowhere near enough room to display the stock properly.  The range of paints etc is limited, but if I need something it's worth asking, as they often do have what I'm after, just not on show.

The best, much bigger, option is the North East Model Centre, about 20 miles from where I live.  It's a converted church with a good amount of floor space, several rows of shelves, and provides a very good range of plastic kits, model railway stuff, R/C, scenics, tools, and paints from Tamiya, Humbrol, Vallejo, Ammo by Mig, AK, and probably others I've missed.  The basement (formerly the crypt?) has quite recently been refurbished & holds kits of spacecraft, cars, trucks, bikes, plus wargaming & fantasy games supplies. There is usually a 10% discount on Tamiya kits, and other special offers from time to time.

It's also a few yards from a decent pub that serves good food & ale to refresh the weary shopper!

There's also a branch of Hobbycraft about 5 or 6 miles from home, which I imagine is something similar to Hobby Lobby in the States.  It carries a modest range of kits, and paints & glues from Tamiya & Humbrol.  There are also useful goodies like cutting mats & other tools, balsa wood etc.  Most of the shop is given over to other crafts - painting, greeting card making, needlecraft, artisan baking, and loads of stuff for kids to stick to other stuff (and, probably, each other).

Back in the Seventies, there were five or six shops in the city centre which sold models, plus two dedicated model shops which catered for every need, and every neighbourhood newsagents' shop or general store stocked a few Airfix kits at pocket-money prices - ah, happy days!

Vell, Zaphod's just zis guy, you know?

TakkaTakkaTakkaTakkaTakkaTakka

 

  • Member since
    July 2008
  • From: Vancouver, the "wet coast"
Posted by castelnuovo on Friday, June 18, 2021 1:36 PM

Bobstamp

Vancouver scale modellers (and RC types) have Magic Box Hobbies in the neighbourhood of Kerrisdale, about a 15 minute drive or a 45 minute bus ride from downtown Vancouver. It's quite a large store with a very friendly staff. I usually deal with Wendy, who is apparently and exceptionally knowledgeable. The store is currently redesigning its website (http://www.magicboxhobbies.ca) so that won't be of much use at this time.

There is one other hobby shop that I know of, in the suburb of Burnaby. Perhaps another FineScale member can comment on that one.

Bob

 

LOL, you beat me to it. This is my go to LHS as I am lucky to live nearby. Agree that Wendy is a quite knowledgeable. She helped me find some paints, compared different manufacturers etc. 

There was another store on Broadway but it closed long time ago. 

  • Member since
    August 2013
  • From: Michigan
Posted by Straycat1911 on Friday, June 18, 2021 1:42 PM

Got a Ryders 45 minutes to the west and Deans in Owosso about an hour east.

Next closest are a couple hours. 

  • Member since
    October 2004
  • From: Orlando, Florida
Posted by ikar01 on Friday, June 18, 2021 5:41 PM

ajlafleche

Doesn't your quote presppose that the women are even looking for you in the first place?

  • Member since
    June 2009
  • From: Florida
Posted by STFD637 on Friday, June 18, 2021 5:48 PM

I wasn't sure if colonial was still open. I use to make it a point to stop in there when I went up that way {disney ;-)} It was one of the last places that had the Gunze Aqueous paint, before they started remaking them. I remember they had a pretty good selection. Thanks!

 

"If a lie is told often, and long enough, it becomes reality!"

Travis/STFD637

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