2013 April 28 Sunday started sunny and ended cold ;)
Things have ground down to a slow crawl. I have spent most of my free time drawing up the Wodonga Area yards and Station, and am very happy with the results.
The yards have nearly exhausted my stocks of track and so I spent Saturday ringing around trying to buy 40 medium electrofrog points and a code 75 electrofrog three way point. The Aussie suppliers were evasive about stock, promising that the wholesalers did have stock and they would have it by Wednesday, and I would have it definitely by Friday. Making allowances for exaggeration, it was not difficult to extend delivery at least another 10 days, but only if stock was in Australia.
The cost was $970 plus postage which was estimated at $43.
So again, I turned to our friends e-Hattons, where I was able to use voice chat to talk with somebody live, and organised the exact same order (No, it had 6 packs of rail adaptors) for $521 Australian and $27 Fedex 4 day delivery. Now as a direct comparison it makes interesting conversation. We all have long suspected that Australian wholesalers are ripping the local railway modellers off.
If e-Hattons can retail at $521 after buying from Peco Wholesalers at perhaps $410?
and Australian wholesalers buy from Peco at the very same price that English wholesalers do, say $310, plus add a small premium for sea container shipping to Australia, over road delivery in the UK. why is it that a discounted retail price offered by 4 of the largest shops in Australia almost doubles the e-Hattons price?
Now I know my local Hobby Shop owner is an honest man, and he has shown me the wholesale prices he must pay for his Peco product, and in every case the dollars he pays for stock surpasses the retail price I just paid for stock in Britain. So it appears to me that the two legal agents that Peco have granted sole distribution rights to in Australia are a pack of thieves (I wont use the common description for them) but I do hope their yacht runs aground in the Mediterranean Sea this winter and if it rolls on its side great!!
How young blokes entering our great hobby, manage today is beyond me. The prices being charged are making some very rich people and putting a lot of strain on our resources to make them so.
So next job is to lay as much track as I can, and as it is almost completely marked out on the baseboards, lay what I can, and await the e-Hattons order