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 Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)

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dave1
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Location / Country : Italia
Registration date : 2018-01-23

PostSubject: Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)   Wed Jan 24, 2018 9:47 am

Hi to everybody, I'm a modelgun/dummy replicas collector from Italy, new to this forum, where I have been lurking for months before registering. I'd better say that I had been a collector, since I started my collection in '88, when I bought my first replica(MGC 1911A1-67 caliber 45 US ARMY MODEL, what else? Wink ) with my (draft) soldier's pay, continued it few years later with a MGC CP M16A1 abs and a Marushin abs Browning HP inglis canada (all of them bought by mail order from militaria/hunting/survival shops of that time) and ended it in '93, when I found in my own hometown, through a minuscle ad in a sell/buy/trade magazine, a warehouse that happened to be of the then exclusive italian distributor for RMI/Collectors Armory replicas (or so they claimed to be...), who were selling out their remaining items in stock.
There I bought something like 36 replicas Very Happy (1/3 of them were copies - both black finish and nickel finish - of the 1911 and SAA for my collection of holsters that never was, among the others there were some police revolvers - metal MGC and abs Kokusai, a western arms ruger blackhawk .44, and only two long guns, the winchester '66 with octagonal barrel and the M1921 Thompson with vertical/ganster grip and military magazine).
Unfortunately I missed all the most sought after items: M16, C.A.R. 15, M1 carbine, winchester '73, RS31 pump action, sterling, Uzi etc., they were gone. I hadn't a steady income when they were still around for sale way back in the late eighties and I hadn't foreseen that they would have become so rare within a few years or I 'd have done an effort to buy at least a few of them. I tried to track them down putting ads in various guns/militaria magazines but they were nowhere to be found, collectors were keeping them for themselves, so I moved to other interests.
It's only in recents years that my interest for modelguns has rewamped, when I first discovered some UK sites who were(and are still) selling modelguns and, some months ago, this forum with its tremendous amount of data and facts about modelguns.
I have been surprised, to say the least, that modelguns were (and are) still in production deep in the 21st century, since I believed they were completely gone, replaced by the (then) hatred Airsoft, and I'm still shocked, too, of how many models were produced by various brands, with most of them that probably never made it to the italian market Crying or Very sad.
Some questions have arisen in me, for which I'm looking for some answers, namely:

1)when actually RMI/Collector's armory ceased to import modelguns from japan and exporting them to the rest of the world?

2)how did distribution of modelguns to Europe(and Italy) work in the past and for how long? anyone out there knows the backgrounds about it?

3)why modelguns currently produced in the far east (e.g.: Wa Shan/Metal Y.T. Corp) are not exported on a large scale as it happens for Airsoft? it's because of the lack of an international distributor? of the lack of request? it's due to the hassles they cause with customs?

I also wonder why some brands like WE(who can be considered the MGC of airsoft), so skilled in doing GBB guns (the closest thing to a modelgun replica), don't do modelguns as well: I don't think the manufacturing process is more complex or expensive than doing arsoft guns. is the reason the same? lack of request from the market?

Thank to all of you who will endure reading this long first post of mine, and to those who'll be able to help me with some answers.
Best regards

Davide
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claymore
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Registration date : 2008-09-07

PostSubject: Re: Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)   Wed Jan 24, 2018 10:01 am

Welcome to the forum dave1. to be honest dont think i can answer most of those questions but no doubt someone on this forum will be able to help.

A possible answer on the why dont WE do modelguns is one, modelguns are a small market so sales would not be high enough i think to make it worthwhile for them. WE guns are pretty reasonably priced any modelgun i think would be more expensive than the airsoft equivalent. Caps is the other think, caps are i believe banned in HK so there is a big problem.

probably a good few reason as well, modelguns break way easier than airsoft, are not always that reliable out of the box, and take a goddamn age to clean. Compare that to airsoft and you have to be a real enthusiast for modelguns, but they they work well they are great.
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dave1
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PostSubject: Re: Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)   Wed Jan 24, 2018 10:43 am

Thank you a lot, claymore, for your truly fast reply and answers! they were very exaustive Smile.
Yes, I can consider myself a true modelguns enthusiast, even if I'm not particolarly interested in the caps/pfc aspect, I collected them more for display/owning than else, and I haven't started buying new models yet, but that'll be the topic for a more specific discussion.
Thank you again.


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Cerwyn
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PostSubject: Re: Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)   Wed Jan 24, 2018 11:01 am

Welcome to the Forum Davide.


Thank you for registering after lurking in the background for months Very Happy. It's good to know you've found the Forum interesting and informative.


I believe that Claymore is correct regarding WE and other airsoft manufacturers' reasons for not producing modelguns. Compared to airsoft, modelguns is a small niche market possibly not worth the cost of setting up to make them. Caps are banned in Hong Kong so that doesn't help potential sales.
YT Corp modelguns are imported into the UK by Plugfirecapguns UK (www.plugfirecapgunsuk.com) and were certainly imported by MG Props (www.mg-props.co.uk)
Taiwanese Customs can cause problems at times but dealers with necessary documents do import them.


I look forwards to reading more posts from you.

_________________
Cerwyn

Hobby collector of Replica model guns and Militaria.
also member of Living History Reenactment Groups.
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dave1
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PostSubject: Re: Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)   Wed Jan 24, 2018 2:04 pm

Thank you all for your friendly welcome Smile

YT Corp modelguns are imported into the UK by Plugfirecapguns UK and were certainly imported by MG Props

I know these sites, they're among the first I discovered. I haven't bought from them yet for a number of reasons: Plugfire I don't think they ship abroad, I didn't read anything about it on their site nor I ever asked them. In general I'say that Modelguns sold from UK are... well, a bit too priced, expecially handguns if compared to long guns (to pay more than 200 for a replica handgun, expecially if not full metal, I find it a bit too much, no matter how detailed or how rare it is). what puzzles me about mgprops is that they assert that most of their models are "open barrel for venting" nd I'm not sure that is pretty legal. Here replicas must have barrel blocked and red tip on the muzzle to be purchased and carried from a place to another (same legislation as in the US, more or less); of course I could always ask them to fit it that way if I ever decided to buy. But the main reasons holding me back from buyng replicas from abroad is that I'm worried about wrong reactions from customs (seizure of item or worse), even if we're talking about purchasing and shipping within the UE, where shouldn't be restrictions or inspections by customs, expecially if shipped by a private express courier.
But that would be the topic for another forum.
That's all for now, see you next time.
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JohnnyV
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PostSubject: Re: Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)   Thu Jan 25, 2018 6:33 pm

Hi Dave1
I suspect you emailed me today Very Happy I am John from PlugFireCapGunsUK Very Happy
Yes we do ship to the EU, Smile

The points raised on here are all true, Caps will always be a problem, as in the current political climate anything explosive becomes an issue. Without importing HUGE qtys it is a very expensive procedure, and the market is not large enough to warrent HUGE qtys.... so a lot of larger companies would rather not bother with such a small demand...

Slowly companies that produce PFC replicas are dissapearing BUT there is still a small market and sections of it are actually growing Smile
Anyway work asside WELCOME !!!
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dave1
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PostSubject: Re: Of past and present of modelguns (distribution to Europe)   Thu Jan 25, 2018 8:53 pm

I suspect you emailed me today Very Happy I am John from PlugFireCapGunsUK Very Happy
Yes we do ship to the EU, Smile

Yes, It's me I confess! Laughing

well, high prices aside, yes customs are my main worry(my wife the second but that's another story...Neutral ), but if you say that you shipped regularly to my country I'll put an order from you sooner or later (when I find something interesting at a bargain price, that is Wink )

Thank you again for your answers and help.
Best regards

Davide
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