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Wednesday, July 24, 2013 - 10:43 AM UTC
Two new announcements from LZ Models has a new German covered train wagon coming, and details for the soon to be release Indian Motocycle.
LZ Models has two new kits on the way. The first is the German Gr covered wagon, the kit will include 142 resin parts with 180 photo-etched parts. The second set is some extra detail for the soon to be release Indian 741B which will include resin saddle bags and 12 photo-etched parts for extra detail.

35116 German Gr Covered Wagon
35430 Detailing set for US Indian 741B Motorcycle
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I was going to make a similar response as I just saw the 'upgrade kit' on another site. Since the upgrade kit is so small (two resin saddlebags and a small PE fret, and is essential to the basic kit anyway), why not have combined it with the motorcyle kit in the first place? It's almost like, "Hmm, I forgot to put these parts in the kit box. No problem...I'll just package them separately and charge again".
JUL 25, 2013 - 02:58 AM
Thanks, Kevin, I can see now by comparing with this kit that it's different.
JUL 25, 2013 - 06:06 AM
Thank you guys for your comments, I appreciate any feedback. Lets start with Indian kit. It is coming out on RRP 23 euro, and contains 2 full kits for that money. It has also included PE sheet with wheel wiring and all additional PE parts to get nice details. It is clearly shown at MM website. From T20 kit MM has turned to produce kits in full plastic, without resin parts, and where possible without PE parts. T20 was strictly plastic kit, and so would be Indian, if there was any good chance to make wheel wiring in plastic with acceptable result. But there is not. Including PE parts in the kit puts at least 50% customers away, and they wont buy the kit just because of PE included. In this case of the Indian kit many guys will probably happy to handle PE wiring, because assembly is very simple, basically 2 PE parts put between plastic wheel pieces, but certainly many of them will not use even additional PE parts included in the kit for better detail. For strictly plastic builders it will create still very good result even without those PE levers and rods I think. Hope you can follow me so far. Plastic kit without PE parts-higher sales. These I need to keep going. I have seen many plastic kits without any PE included, and I have seen many AM producers making PE detailing sets for those kits - but I have never seen that someone finds it strange, even if there are PE parts offered for parts not supplied with the kit in plastic Now allow me a few questions. Why should I supply with the kit PE drive chain, if the kit contains quite nice one molded in plastic? Why should I provide with the kit PE pedal levers, if there are quite nice molded ones supplied in the kit? Why should I add into the kit PE saddle holders, if there are parts molded in plastic in the kit? All these PE parts in detailing set are to get true to scale thickness or sharper detail, but why they should be supplied with the kit, if there is quite good plastic option included? How many people would use them to replace plastic parts? 1 of 10? Why 9 of 10 guys should pay more money for the kit with another PE set included, if they are not gonna use it at all? That one fella looking for true to scale chain will be glad to pay a little extra for the set he considers necessary for his detail level, but 9 guys would feel much stranger than you paying for parts they dont need at all. All these PE parts offered with additional detailing set are included in the kit in plastic, and in my opinion pretty well molded - so why I should include in the kit also PE options for them and make the kit more expensive, when most guys will never use these PEs, but will be happy with good enough plastic parts provided? If you check sprue images and test build images at the link below, you will see all these kits part are included, and my test build shows also PE parts included in the kit - except first two images, these are not primed before I glued on PE bits click So I did not forget to put these parts into the kit, they all are included in plastic, and I am not going to charge for them again - only the guys who want them true to scale (not many even see difference between 0,4mm thickness in plastic and 0,28mm in brass, but some do, and some mind, so for these the detailing set is created) I would feel much stranger to let everyone pay for parts they do not want to use. Funny is that few months ago I read stories and complaints about PE parts included in kits, which were found rather complex and complicated, and guys shouting for full plastic kits, and now it is right opposite. But certainly there are many more who dont want PE upgrades, if the plastic parts are good enough. I believe our new kits offer quite high detail without any massive thick plastic, so tell me why I should include in the kits also upgrade sets to replace plastic parts? How many manufacturers do that? Right now I can tell you that Diamond kits coming shortly are also strictly plastic kits with all parts molded in plastic, possibly except simple tool trays, which may be provided in PE. But certainly there will be again some detailing PE set available to replace plastic parts in the kits. The same for Chevy C60L and other kits planned. Cheers Libor
JUL 25, 2013 - 10:42 AM
Thank you guys for your comments, I appreciate any feedback. Lets start with Indian kit. It is coming out on RRP 23 euro, and contains 2 full kits for that money. It has also included PE sheet with wheel wiring and all additional PE parts to get nice details. It is clearly shown at MM website. From T20 kit MM has turned to produce kits in full plastic, without resin parts, and where possible without PE parts. T20 was strictly plastic kit, and so would be Indian, if there was any good chance to make wheel wiring in plastic with acceptable result. But there is not. Including PE parts in the kit puts at least 50% customers away, and they wont buy the kit just because of PE included. In this case of the Indian kit many guys will probably happy to handle PE wiring, because assembly is very simple, basically 2 PE parts put between plastic wheel pieces, but certainly many of them will not use even additional PE parts included in the kit for better detail. For strictly plastic builders it will create still very good result even without those PE levers and rods I think. Hope you can follow me so far. Plastic kit without PE parts-higher sales. These I need to keep going. I have seen many plastic kits without any PE included, and I have seen many AM producers making PE detailing sets for those kits - but I have never seen that someone finds it strange, even if there are PE parts offered for parts not supplied with the kit in plastic Now allow me a few questions. Why should I supply with the kit PE drive chain, if the kit contains quite nice one molded in plastic? Why should I provide with the kit PE pedal levers, if there are quite nice molded ones supplied in the kit? Why should I add into the kit PE saddle holders, if there are parts molded in plastic in the kit? All these PE parts in detailing set are to get true to scale thickness or sharper detail, but why they should be supplied with the kit, if there is quite good plastic option included? How many people would use them to replace plastic parts? 1 of 10? Why 9 of 10 guys should pay more money for the kit with another PE set included, if they are not gonna use it at all? That one fella looking for true to scale chain will be glad to pay a little extra for the set he considers necessary for his detail level, but 9 guys would feel much stranger than you paying for parts they dont need at all. All these PE parts offered with additional detailing set are included in the kit in plastic, and in my opinion pretty well molded - so why I should include in the kit also PE options for them and make the kit more expensive, when most guys will never use these PEs, but will be happy with good enough plastic parts provided? If you check sprue images and test build images at the link below, you will see all these kits part are included, and my test build shows also PE parts included in the kit - except first two images, these are not primed before I glued on PE bits click So I did not forget to put these parts into the kit, they all are included in plastic, and I am not going to charge for them again - only the guys who want them true to scale (not many even see difference between 0,4mm thickness in plastic and 0,28mm in brass, but some do, and some mind, so for these the detailing set is created) I would feel much stranger to let everyone pay for parts they do not want to use. Funny is that few months ago I read stories and complaints about PE parts included in kits, which were found rather complex and complicated, and guys shouting for full plastic kits, and now it is right opposite. But certainly there are many more who dont want PE upgrades, if the plastic parts are good enough. I believe our new kits offer quite high detail without any massive thick plastic, so tell me why I should include in the kits also upgrade sets to replace plastic parts? How many manufacturers do that? Right now I can tell you that Diamond kits coming shortly are also strictly plastic kits with all parts molded in plastic, possibly except simple tool trays, which may be provided in PE. But certainly there will be again some detailing PE set available to replace plastic parts in the kits. The same for Chevy C60L and other kits planned. Cheers Libor[/quote] Hi, Libor! I see your point exactly! What some of your customers do not realize is that you are not a huge model company like DRAGON or TRUMPETER, etc. This means that every penny counts when you are working on new projects, and ultimately getting them into production. The PE engineering and implementation is an entirely separate effort aside from the plastic parts. Maybe it would be easier to include the extra PE parts with the plastic kits, and then charge a higher retail price? It would make things a bit more simple for us, the modellers... Libor, a question? Are you still planning to produce the Morris Commercial-series lorries in the future?
JUL 25, 2013 - 11:25 AM
Hi Libor, Thanks for taking the time - I like your approach - it gives me choice, sometimes I want PE, other times not - and I certainly know my carpet does not need any more PE!!. I will definitely be buying the Indian - it goes very nicely with my Triumph and BSA kits. Maybe I will buy the upgrade, who knows?, but the choice is mine. I had no concerns buying the ITA BSA upgrade - same principle just differ manufacturers. And many people will be happy with the completely plastic Tamiya kit alone. On another question - I am not too sure about the names associated with one of your other kits, but I am very interested in your future Field Artillery Tractors - I have a few 1/35 25 pounders in need of a tow. My question is - is one of the versions the same as the Tamiya Quad? (of course I hope the answer is yes) Best regards Ian
JUL 25, 2013 - 01:00 PM
Hello Libor, Thank you for taking the time to reply to my post. It is gratifying to see a manufacturer take such interest and communicate directly to his customers. Your marketing decisions are, of course, you own to make and I'm sure you base them on the feedback from many sources and not just individuals making comments on forums such as these. I can only speak as one person - a single customer. My issue is not with the kit design or engineering decisions to make some part or another out of either plastic, PE, but is with the marketing decision to provide or not to provide an option with both kinds of parts in the same kit if those parts are available through the design and engineering. My reason is that I am finding it very difficult to source the additional up-date sets at the same time and from the same vendor. Because I want to build the model with the PE details, I must go through significant extra effort, time and expense to track down the up-grade sets in addition to the base models. Because of this added trouble, your models and kits are less attractive to me than others. Whereas I might purchase a kit knowing that I will add it to my stash for building in the future, I now know from my experience with other Mirror Models / LZ products that if I buy the kit I will have to begin a "modeler's safari" to try to track down the up-grade set required. I found this "modeler's safari" so much trouble with the last two Mirror Models kits that I purchased that I am very reluctant to begin that same process with the new Indian motorcycle kit. For you, this means that you have lost one sure sale unless and until I happen to find a vendor that happens to have both the kit and the up-grade set in stock together. By that time I may have already lost interest in the subject or for some other reason decide not to buy. However, if you had included this small additional PE fret with the base kit (which would not effect the "buildability" of the kit for those who do not like PE since those parts are also in plastic), all I would have to find is a vendor with the kit, which is much easier. I would gladly order today and add the kit to my stash knowing that it is complete and ready to build when I want. I cannot and will not take the chance of buying the Mirror Models kit and hope that I can find the LZ models up-grade later. Knowing that both are "limited" production makes the chances of future sourcing the LZ models up-grade too risky to justify buying the Mirror Model without it at the same time. Because you have made Mirror Models and LZ Models into two separate identities, this also adds to the problems of availability since some vendors and distributors (here in North America, at least) do not realize that essential or very desirable up-grades for a Mirror Models kit is even available because the source is from another brand line. Again. I can only speak from the point of view of one customer located in North America. However, I cannot believe that I am the only person who finds this situation frustrating to the point where it turns me away from your business. I would like to order your Indian motorcycle kit right now from my LHS, but I know that his distributor will not have the LZ up-grade when I do. The distributor will have to special order the up-grade. So, I must place a special order for a special order and hope that the products will eventually become available. So, from this customer's point of view and experiences, your marketing plan is a serious disincentive to purchasing your products no matter how attractive the particular subjects might be. This is not intended as a personal criticism, just honest customer feedback about my previous experience purchasing my last two Mirror Models kits.
JUL 26, 2013 - 01:36 AM
Hi guys many thanks for your feedback. There is no problem to add another PE sets into the box, but the problem is that would make its price higher and many more will wonder why they have to pay for PE parts not necessary for the build, so pay for something they dont want and not gonna use. Also from my experience presence of PE parts drives many average builders away from the kits, as they think it would be over their skills. So my point is to make kits as good as possible in plain plastic, and who wants to upgrade it, will need to get these sets, if they exist. LZ has been here 3 years, and there is no item discontinued except a couple kits which are coming in plastic now, so there is no point to keep their resin option available anymore, otherwise there is no problem to get any earlier release from LZ online shop. For returning customers they also offer usually free shipping so you dont need to pay a coin extra. Problem with access to LZ range is only USA to be honest, most of my business partners around the world stock at least detailing sets for Mirror kit if not other LZ products. But there is nothing I could change unless you, customers, will push your local shops to stock items you want and need. I have been 3 years in hobby business, so far without making a penny profit, I could write books and stories here how difficult it is to deal with kit distributors and importers, how hard it is to make them place first order to try - many of them will never do anyway, and again to my previous words - many of them even will not stock your products, because they contain PE parts, and their customers dont like it - that is why no Mirror kit is available in New Zealand, Thailand, Taiwan, Mallorca, Bulgaria, etc, I could continue with this list when distributors and importers stated presence of PE in the box as the reason not to try the kits..... So generally you can buy wherever you can and support good thing if you like the products, or you can leave it too. For me it is kinda fun and good feeling to supply some kits, which would hardly appear ever - so far I am not loosing money, but should it happen, I can quit doing that any time, no hard feelings. I still do my chefs job for living, and I can survive on it for the rest of my life. Certainly it would save me lots of stress and pressure. These words can also explain what manufacturer I am and why I have no problem to talk to my customers. FAT - yes, it is coming, I believe not too far from now - couple of variants, Cab11 and Cab13. Tamiya kit was Cab12 I believe. Morris Commercial, I have some plans, but not certain now, some are to be announced from China soon, thats why I left the Morris Quad. Well, I gotta go to my normal work now, it is busy season, strangely nice weather in usually rainy Ireland, so 12hrs shift in busy kitchen for me Cheers Libor
JUL 26, 2013 - 09:45 PM
Libor, That is an exceptional underframe with brake rigging! The entire kit just amazes me!
SEP 02, 2013 - 02:21 PM
Hi Libor, Hire a marketing team. Fire your production manager. Fire your quality control guy. Put everything in one box & stop "fuking" around . You have quite a job on your hands now, regaining the trust of the public/consumer. Put everything in one box, it's a custom kit, so, put a custom "pricetag" on everything. The consumer will understand the high price [if so] & will be willing to shell out the dough for it.
JAN 28, 2014 - 03:27 AM
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