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58 Impala

Hobby Link Japan - good to deal with?

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Was thinking about buying some items from HLJ, but you have to log in as a member. Has anyone dealt with them? Are they reputable? Any inputs would be appreciated.

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I've bought things from them with never any problem and things arrive surprisingly fast from there. They are one of the best and most reliable hobby sites.

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Ditto above. HJL & Hobby Search are 2 of the best On-Line stores to deal with :-)

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I agree with what others have said. I've used them a couple of times without any issues.

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The phrase "Support Your Local Hobby Shop" is a dying issue as many modelers are buying their models, paints, and supplies from mail order and online hobby venues. Soon your local hobby shop will have died and will no longer be there. NO crying when they're gone.

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The phrase "Support Your Local Hobby Shop" is a dying issue as many modelers are buying their models, paints, and supplies from mail order and online hobby venues. Soon your local hobby shop will have died and will no longer be there. NO crying when they're gone.

Yeah well when my local hobby shop starts carrying a plethora of JDM kits I will purchase them there. But since many kits that HLJ sells aren't available to the middle men of the hobby distribution world for my LHS to even be able to order them from...now what? I can't build what I want?

My, your, and the OP's LHS aren't losing any money to HLJ unless they're really stocking import kits heavily. No one in their right mind is going to order a DOMESTIC (Revell, Round 2, Moebius) kit via HLJ unless they want to pay $45 for it, and then have to reimport the thing.

HLJ also carries all things Japanese/Asian, not just model kits. It's an entire niche of the hobby, that allows us in the U.S. and elsewhere to get hobbies and toys at market prices in Japan, rather than trying to find them locally and paying the associated importer's markups.

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Was thinking about buying some items from HLJ, but you have to log in as a member. Has anyone dealt with them? Are they reputable? Any inputs would be appreciated.

Completely trustworthy, completely reputable. As a result I'm completely loyal. The member thing us because they have a feature called "My Private Warehouse" which allows you to hold items you've purchased for up to 60 days so that if you order an in-stock item, a backordered item, and a pre-order item, you can hold the in-stock item (after paying for it - you don't pay for backorders or pre-orders until they are in stock) until everything is ready for shipment instead of having to pay for three seperate shipments.

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Bought from them several times, no issues ever. Even with stuff that's backordered, they tend to take care of it quickly.

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HLJ has been pretty good, they are beholden to backorders by the vendors like everyone else, but at least show status on their items, and are usually pretty quick to get items in before others, like Hobby Design items which are notorious for going out of stock or discountinued

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The phrase "Support Your Local Hobby Shop" is a dying issue as many modelers are buying their models, paints, and supplies from mail order and online hobby venues. Soon your local hobby shop will have died and will no longer be there. NO crying when they're gone.

One of the realities of the 21st century of doing business. The local/mom and pop stores loose out the big chains. The big chains loose out to the warehouse chains. All loose out to the internet. Unless they can find a way to fill a niche that the bigger fish have missed. I would rather buy from a local vender in all cases, but if they don't carry it then I go where I have to, to get what I want. I may be weird, but I won't buy something I don't need or want just to support a local store. Life has change. Adapt or die. It is the way of things.

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I echo what James said, I am spending more money at HLJ then I care to know what the dollar amount has added up to at this point :lol:

Have fun spending your money at HLJ

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I've been using them for years, I haven't had a local model shop for many years, the one the other side of town makes you feel as welcome as a fart in a astronaut suit, so I haven't been to there shop for ages, so for me it's the internet or nothing ....

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I've been using them for about a decade... they are the best source for Japanese kits, IMO..and they ship pretty quickly for in-stock items (often as fast as 3 days from Japan via Fed Ex) and I like their Private Warehouse service for combining shipments..

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I have bought often from HLJ, and everything I get I cannot get here. Since they have added their Private Warehouse feature, it is even better. When I have a question about a product, their support answers, even going back to the manufacturer if need be.

If I can buy it here, I will. Even if more costly since I firmly believe in supporting your LHS. But, a lot of aftermarket is not readily availbale anywhere in the USA, let alone a LHS. I speak of foreign car aftermarket.

I just put my preorder in for the Tamiya 1/24 La Ferrari which will be released late this year.

What I find interesting, is that both HLJ and Hobby Search are also carrying Revell USA, Revell Germany and Round 2 kits and selling in the Asian markets (I suppose as prices are high).

Edited by Exotics_Builder

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Yeah well when my local hobby shop starts carrying a plethora of JDM kits I will purchase them there. But since many kits that HLJ sells aren't available to the middle men of the hobby distribution world for my LHS to even be able to order them from...now what? I can't build what I want?

My, your, and the OP's LHS aren't losing any money to HLJ unless they're really stocking import kits heavily. No one in their right mind is going to order a DOMESTIC (Revell, Round 2, Moebius) kit via HLJ unless they want to pay $45 for it, and then have to reimport the thing.

HLJ also carries all things Japanese/Asian, not just model kits. It's an entire niche of the hobby, that allows us in the U.S. and elsewhere to get hobbies and toys at market prices in Japan, rather than trying to find them locally and paying the associated importer's markups.

Well said. I DO have a LHS within 15 minutes and not one of the chains. It's like the old time hobby shops ... one owner, supplies galore and the brands you want, many different hobbies covered but he IS an auto modeler. I buy everything I can from him but sometimes I see that oddball Japanese kit or accessory at HLJ (ore another) and I get it.

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I have a good LHS (not a chain store) about 25 min from home and 10 min from my office, good selection of paint and supplies...I buy most of my new kits there or via Model Roundup or HLJ for Japanese kits.

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I am interested in buying from HLJ because of the extensive collection of Japanese kits and accessories. There is no US company that I know of sells a lot of this stuff. In particular right now I'm looking for aftermarket wheels.

Edited by 58 Impala

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I am interested in buying from HLJ because of the extensive collection of Japanese kits and accessories. There is no US company that I know of sells a lot of this stuff. In particular right now I'm looking for aftermarket wheels.

Any particular after-market wheels you're interested in? I have quite alot of Aoshima 20/19/18 in wheels I'm willing to let go of, maybe in trade/swap??? PM me if you like??

Cheers Cliff

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I am interested in buying from HLJ because of the extensive collection of Japanese kits and accessories. There is no US company that I know of sells a lot of this stuff. In particular right now I'm looking for aftermarket wheels.

Ebay is another place to find alot of stuff as well

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Just bought Dave Deal's The Coupe from Riverside from HobbyLink. I was a little scared since it was expensive, but it was easy, and arrived very quickly. Highly recommended!

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I've been dealing with HLJ since 2001 and found them to be 100% reliable. Their new private Warehouse function is excellent for cutting back on shipping expenses and juggling shipments to avoid customs duties and taxes that cut in down here once the package exceeds a prescribed amount in value.

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