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Banzai Hobby


cteno4

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Sorry to hear that VJM. I've ordered twice from them already and the packaging was the high standard I've got used to with other JP online retailers.

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So my stuff arrived from Banzai Hobby today (I selected SAL, and with the Christmas rush, I expected it to be slow), but I am a bit disappointed by the packing.  No bubble wrap or foam wrap; the models stuffed in a box that didn't really fit properly.  The Kato paper sleeve had a number of dings and scratches that either bubble wrap or a little cushioning would have prevented.

 

That's how they shipped mine, too.  The plastic case of my EF30 was cracked (the loco itself was OK).

 

Having said that, the price was low enough that I'll probably be back for their next blowout.

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Guest keio6000

Please allow me to share a recent negative experience with "Banzai Hobby".  They have a modest number of japanese prototype items listed.   I recently purchased two of something that my regular supplier (who I will not name in this comment but who i have mentioned on multiple occasions before) was out of.   Now, Banzai Hobby does state on their website that they don't keep things in stock and sometimes they have to get them from suppliers, but basically what happened to me was that they cancelled my order since they could not get it from their suppliers.  The whole process took 5 days from my purchase to their cancelling of my order.   Look, I get it, not everybody can keep items in stock.   But given Banzai's limited product range, then it's not clear what they are doing except wasting customer's time if their job basically consists of taking orders, strolling down to the wholesaler, and making an arbitrage profit if the item happens to be in stock.   Sure, products can go out of stock now and then, but I don't get the impression that Banzai hobby really tries that hard.

 

Incidentally, this is the same product that I had earlier bought on ebay from PlazaJapan.  While I have ordered from plazajapan before, for this order they claimed the items were shipped and then after 3 months... nothing. They promptly gave me my money back, but I got the distinct impression that they never shipped it at all.  precisely zero items before have gotten lost in the post from japan to the uk, and even though i paid for tracked postage, they didnt respond with a tracking number or anything - they just refunded me once i asked, which was on one hand good customer service and on the other hand....

 

(the item in question - a certain tomytec railway coll set has since gotten a bit hard to find - if anybody can help me out i am looking for the keisei 3500 4-car set ideally 2 of them. to make a full train).  i dont care which aircon version at this point though prefer the first release.

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Actually there is an  'Available only' checkbox on the site, which in theory should help avoiding backordering things that may be out of stock at the supplier.

 

Also, asking for EMS shipping and requesting the tracking number in 3-5 days after payment helps avoiding such long wait situations as you can use the buyer protection on ebay or request a refund on paypal immediately. (this means the seller must provide a proof of shipment in the form of a tracking number or you can immediately file a non shipping seller case which is a very quick way to get a refund from the site, regardless what the seller is saying) The EMS system also has a pretty good trackability and it's rather fast compared to everything else.

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Guest keio6000

all well and good, except that banzai hobby hasnt removed the items from their website despite knowing they are out of stock.  as i said, i did not get a positive impression from them.

 

a search by 'keisei' shows the item and no checkbox. im sure there is a way to get such a checkbox, but its a waste.

 

i see no need to pay for ems shipping for items that don't require it; it's expensive and bad for the environment.  honestly, i just forgot about the order for some time from plazajapan.   it's more that i very strongly suspect they just didn't send it.

Edited by keio6000
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Actually they are listed as sold out right now. I would assume they don't check availability of backorder items until someone actually backorders them. You have to list with the dropdown menu, select each category and then you get the checkbox, sort options and a really short in stock item list after you select available only. The site is badly designed, but i would assume they don't have any bad intentions with it. If you don't see the sold out flag under the item and still try to order it, then that might be a different case. (hobby search has long sold out and discontinued flags for similar cases, when there is no hope for getting it in stock) Just order carefully, don't pay until they can ship and ask for email confirmation of availability before payment. (the more professional hobby search site has these as extra order options and it only makes order confirmation 3-5 days longer)

 

EMS shipping is good for a track and trace order. For normal surface packages (the category below SAL), there is no tracking number and you can't hold the seller responsible. EMS is expensive, but SAL is similar, except with a much lower priority. Surface only (in container, by ship) is the cheapest, but don't get surprised if the container falls off the ship and nobody checks what was in it.

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ModelTrainPlus pretty much meets all my JNS requirements with his usual efficiency and professionalism. Registered air packets also seem to get here almost as quickly as EMS though insurance cover may be a bit lower.

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EMS and SAL is using air transport over container shipping. Actually anything that takes less than 3 months to get from Japan to Europe or the US are using some form of air transport, which is worse for the environment than using ships. Imho the only truely clean way would be using modern clippers and sailing everything across the world. Well, it would take a year or more for a package to arrive, but with an automated ship, the transport would be mostly CO2 free.

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Guest keio6000

Can someone explain how EMS is bad for the environment? That is a wacky claim.

 

What's even wackier is somebody both asking a question professing ignorance of and simultaneously having a strong opinion on the matter.  

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Guest keio6000

ModelTrainPlus pretty much meets all my JNS requirements with his usual efficiency and professionalism. Registered air packets also seem to get here almost as quickly as EMS though insurance cover may be a bit lower.

 

MTP was sold out of this particular item.  Otherwise, they'd be my first choice.

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We'll both Sal and EMS are air transport for the big jump, EMS just gets first in line, so both have the same footprint on that jump. But on either end the EMS may get special shipping and thus a higher carbon footprint. Here in the us it's treated as express one day package so will go air if any distance and then many times it gets special delivery earlier in the day than regular post so big difference there (those trucks usually just have a handful of packages going all over the place)! May be some similar action on the Japanese side as well to get EMS to the airport quickly. So overall express services like EMS will have a higher carbon footprint.

 

Jeff

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Imho the only truely clean way would be using modern clippers and sailing everything across the world. Well, it would take a year or more for a package to arrive, but with an automated ship, the transport would be mostly CO2 free.

 

Well, certainly more fuel efficient, but think of all the waste produced by those sailors over a year vs. the far shorter duration of the other options mentioned.

 

There's also the fact that it would take hundreds (thousands?) of clippers to carry the same cargo as one modern container ship.

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Yes SAL is air freight like EMS its just done as space on the plane, so it can sit a while waiting for room. Also i expect on the japan end it takes the usual mail route to the airport, not handled like express EMS. On the other country end SAL is usually handled like a parcel post package so can be slow depending on the country getting out of custom to the house. In the US EMS is next day on the US side so one day service once out of customs (usually a day or less, but sometimes a few days).

 

Surface is the old container ship method and looks like its really getting phased out these days as an option for regular international mail shipping. its usually very slow and is not really tracked much usually. I use to use it decades ago to ship larger equipment down to new zealand and it would take 2-4 months from the US west coast.

 

jeff

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Thanks. I thought SAL was by air. Same as EMS.

 

When I first made my statement. I didn't include surface mail as an option in my mind as I made the assumption those in Eastern Europe wouldn't use it as an option for such small packages.

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Sad to see it go, I'm surprised there wasn't more warning of this.  At least there are some good final deals.

https://banzaihobby.com/closing-sale

 

(for all you future readers, this was their 2018 April fools prank.  Its a sale not a closing)

Edited by Kiha66
  • Haha 2
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Haha!!  

 

Read closer:

 

 

** Closing Down Sales is APRIL FOOL JOKE! *

Coupon Code as well as April Sales are TRUE!

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33 minutes ago, bill937ca said:

Haha!!  

 

Read closer:

 

 

** Closing Down Sales is APRIL FOOL JOKE! *

Coupon Code as well as April Sales are TRUE!

 

Shh, its a secret! :grin

  • Haha 1
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Sweet

 

They had the JR 221 basic set listed as available.   Ordered it with the coupon.   We'll see what happens (really in stock, etc).

 

Another unit for my Kansai fleet.  Having probably ridden many 221* this was a good find.   

 

* having ridden many times on the lines they run on and having ridden the brown livery rapids I've probably been on 221 as well as the 225 and 223 the last 15 years...

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On 4/1/2018 at 7:23 PM, chadbag said:

Sweet

 

They had the JR 221 basic set listed as available.   Ordered it with the coupon.   We'll see what happens (really in stock, etc).

 

Another unit for my Kansai fleet.  Having probably ridden many 221* this was a good find.   

 

* having ridden many times on the lines they run on and having ridden the brown livery rapids I've probably been on 221 as well as the 225 and 223 the last 15 years...

 

Well, they did not really have it themselves in stock and wrote to tell me that they could no longer get it.  After some back and forth about advertising things you don't have, they did give me a credit certificate worth the value of the coupon on my order, which was nice.  Overall their CS was top notch.  They also reported back that they had discussed the issue in a team meeting and were going to update the train section more often (trains are not their big thing -- the figures and stuff are).

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