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Shocking price rises!!??


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....I'd like to point out not everything's gone up.(Yet)

Just by way of example, on FLO website "Astro Essentials Plossls", still £20 a pop, "Baader Genuine Orthos" still £49 each.

No ,I'm definitely not on commission!, just chose those as examples because i think they represent excellent VFM @ their repective price points(or maybe a little more)

So 'bargains' still to be had for the wisey monkey.😉

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Nobody likes price rises, but I can't help but feel we've lived through an unusual 'low price' period, which may have caused us to expect more for less. Forty years ago a 4" refractor would be a scope

Still a lot better than the astronomical world I started out in the early 70's. My first full time job in early 1975 was £15 ppw at that time a Dixons special 60mm refractor was close on £30,there rea

Showing?!  Sounds like it might have a big neon sign over the top saying "Get your naivety here" whilst a full marching band complete with majorettes parade around it playing "When the saints go march

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10 minutes ago, SiriusB said:

"Baader Genuine Orthos" still £49 each.

I assume you mean classic orthos there?  If they're Genuine Orthos at £49 each I think I might be buying myself another set :D

James

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Given the endless cloudy nights we’ve had here in the UK since September I’m surprised demand for astro gear from people taking up the hobby is high at all!

I suspect once things get back to normal many people who dabbled in astronomy over lockdown for the first time will return to previous interests that can be pursued once again.

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3 minutes ago, 7170 said:

Given the endless cloudy nights we’ve had here in the UK since September I’m surprised demand for astro gear from people taking up the hobby is high at all!

I suspect once things get back to normal many people who dabbled in astronomy over lockdown for the first time will return to previous interests that can be pursued once again.

When it all hits the used market, at least it will be "low mileage" :rolleyes2:

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29 minutes ago, JamesF said:

I assume you mean classic orthos there?  If they're Genuine Orthos at £49 each I think I might be buying myself another set :D

James

Senior moment James .😆 Put me down for a set of BGO's@ £49 a pop too!

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56 minutes ago, SiriusB said:

It doesn't have to be an expensive hobby. As others have stated the cost of entry level is way lower than it used to be even with price hikes.

   I doubt Astronomy will be the only sector hit by price rises this year.🤔

Probably saved me some £,I've suddenly lost any great desire for a larger ED. 😉

True.

I think many of us make it expensive because we want something new and shiney and probably not because we need it.

And a price hike will probably not change people like that (and yes that includes myself) will it ???? Probably not.

Steve

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On 13/02/2021 at 12:21, wxsatuser said:

Exactly, if no one likes the price do not pay it.

I'm ready for the massive flash mob (my EPs collection is now complete!) :)

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Off topic, is there a website where I can look though classic scope ads? I love looking at those classic scope ads, if the  fine text is readable then even better.

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On 18/02/2021 at 18:23, Viktiste said:

I might be totally mistaking,  but it seems to me prices are cartel driven, rather than driven by the covid pandemic.. 

This (and the linked legal paper's) are interesting reading:

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/745844-synta-celestron-ningbo-sunny-meade-et-al-latest/

 

I think its already been stated that shipping costs have gone up 8-10x. Commodities spiking as well, so we are now entering an era of inflation... 

If prices come down, a little maybe but how much is anyone guess....

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59 minutes ago, Viktiste said:

I might be totally mistaking,  but it seems to me prices are cartel driven, rather than driven by the covid pandemic.. 

This (and the linked legal paper's) are interesting reading:

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/745844-synta-celestron-ningbo-sunny-meade-et-al-latest/

 

Very interesting story. I think that you're partly correct in as much there is a cartel in this market however the impact of this is magnified by the distortions in the shipping market which should settle down in the next few months. The shortage of containers will be resolved as manufacturers have increased output and with production levels recovering in Asia prices should at the very least stabilise of not come down but I suspect that the new equilibrium prices will remain 7-15 % higher than pre pandemic... 

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The thing that annoys me most about this is people are now trying to sell their used gear, that's years old, for more than the new price when they bought it.

I also recently saw a used neq6 for £1000 and another, on the same website, with upgrades alt az bolts for £1100. So that's a £100 increase for some used £30 bolts.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Slightly off topic but due to a bit of Googling the issue of price increases, blamed in part on container shortages, I now get sent shipping information and have been amazed by the amount of containers that fall off ships mid sea. 

I've linked to a article relating the loss of 240 containers off one ship, another another lost over a thousand.

https://theloadstar.com/one-apus-and-maersk-eindhoven-may-be-back-on-course-this-month/

Although 'trade' newsworthy these do not seem to be unusual or infrequent infrequent events.

Who knows what is now littering the sea bed, maybe your next telescope.

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On 13/02/2021 at 12:24, wesdon1 said:

I just wanted to express my shock and indeed anger at the astronomical ( pun intended ) price rises for Telescope equipment during recent months!!?? It all started on Ebay, and yesterday i noticed all the retail shops online have also massively increased their prices!!?? It was/is already such an expensive hobby, so i don't understand why this is happening ?? 

With the pound getting stronger against the dollar and most of this stuff coming from outside the EU it can only be increased shipping costs as mentioned by FLO recently. But if demand if high that's going to always push up prices, so given supply is low this is to be expected really.

Edited by Adam J
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Another thing that means most prices are very much the same at all retail outlets is that astro equipment has very low profit margins so no room for any real discounts. 

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1 hour ago, WiltsStarGazer said:

Slightly off topic but due to a bit of Googling the issue of price increases, blamed in part on container shortages, I now get sent shipping information and have been amazed by the amount of containers that fall off ships mid sea. 

I've linked to a article relating the loss of 240 containers off one ship, another another lost over a thousand.

https://theloadstar.com/one-apus-and-maersk-eindhoven-may-be-back-on-course-this-month/

Although 'trade' newsworthy these do not seem to be unusual or infrequent infrequent events.

Who knows what is now littering the sea bed, maybe your next telescope.

Ah, reminds me of the epic tale of the great duck  flotilla of 1992 !

https://www.iflscience.com/environment/28000-rubber-ducks-accidentally-embarked-on-an-epic-ocean-current-study-in-1992/

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Just to add my £'s worth here . The Op has sighted a  200mm Dob as an example ,  and has a point in the actual margin of increase ...It does not matter how steady prices were before , that in itself doesn't justify that rate of increase . The main stores , including FLO , will certainly not be offsetting any price increase as they , obviously wish their  margins to remain constant . I am a little surprised on this thread how many people just metaphorically just "shrug their shoulders " and defend the increases . Its true that one can indeed make astronomy as expensive or less expensive as they want, but , we all know that we are a captive audience in this field and that by and large are going to pay these prices . But that doesn't mean  we shouldn't question the morality as well as the justification for the increases .  As for prices actually going down after this pandemic is contained ... No chance .  Why would suppliers and indeed retailers put prices down ? Maybe some non selling items would be on "offer" but , as we know Retailers and suppliers are in this to make money , Its a business . We can't blame them for that . I reckon we all do the same .  

Astronomy has become "the hobby " to get into in these weird times ... as was mentioned earlier , there may be some bargains to be had later in the year when a lot of astronomy gear turns up on the forums wanting a new home . 

All the above is just my humble opinion ... Now , where is my credit card ... I NEED THAT NEW FOCUSER ;) 

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I remeber when a container ship lost a number of 40 ft containers overboard in a harbour. Full of instant mashed potaroes so. just add water and hey presto exploding containers. 😁

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@Stu1smartcookie

I think that market is self regulating entity.

We can certainly talk about the reason for price increase or decrease and we can even express our like or dislike of the state of affairs. Ultimately - we, who pay for the items are in part responsible for prices. If something is too expensive in your view - then there is really simple course of action for you. You can either:

a) purchase same/similar item from competition (be that retailer or vendor)

b) accept that something has realistic price if all competitors offer item at that price or - get into the game and offer item at lower price than that and make your fortunes that way

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2 minutes ago, vlaiv said:

@Stu1smartcookie

I think that market is self regulating entity.

We can certainly talk about the reason for price increase or decrease and we can even express our like or dislike of the state of affairs. Ultimately - we, who pay for the items are in part responsible for prices. If something is too expensive in your view - then there is really simple course of action for you. You can either:

a) purchase same/similar item from competition (be that retailer or vendor)

b) accept that something has realistic price if all competitors offer item at that price or - get into the game and offer item at lower price than that and make your fortunes that way

Spot on.

J.M. Keynes (not to be confused with the place of the same name, featuring many roundabouts  🙂 ) explained it, demand and supply.

If the demand persists at the current price, that price will stay (or be increased) .

If demand falls at this level of supply, factories will not shift their stock, and either supply will be reduced, or prices will fall to get stock moving.  An idle factory and workers being paid to make stuff which won't sell will lose money.

I was obliged to study economics for a short time way back when, due to a timetabling peculiarity, Most of it seemed pretty daft by the standards I'd been inculcated with from studying science (one of the first things an economics lecturer said was that consumers are assumed to make sensible spending decisions . Even at the age of 19 i thought that was a poor foundation to build on !)  , but a few things seemed logical, and elasticity of demand was one of them .

https://penpoin.com/elasticity-of-demand/

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Well put @Tiny Clanger @vlaiv

Personally I imagine the price rises will be here to stay, its very rare for them to go down generally unless the market for the product collapses.  That said how much the current stock exhaustion was driven by the lockdown boom in hobbies (rather than general factory / shipping issues) is probably going to be the key factor if they are to go down.

I imagine that whilst people who are in the know will grumble they will still purchase because they want the item (they are already invested in an expensive hobby). People not in the know will not know any different and will assume as all retailers are running at the same price that this is standard entry cost into an expensive hobby. I don't really see much price differences between retailers, its mostly down to specific items they sell that others dont or they have available stock.

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Interestingly the car industry is being hit by shipping charges as well as the clothes industry.

see: https://www.politico.eu/article/shipping-container-shortage-hits-global-trade-freight-prices/

No elasticity in demand for them, hence price will need to be absorbed and maybe larger margins/credit lines as well.

 

 

Edited by Deadlake
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I'm not sure if high prices are here to stay.

Once things get back into normal - there will be plenty of second hand items and demand will go down. This will force prices to go down as well.

I remember HDD prices skyrocketing after floods in Taiwan that put several factories out of work. That created temporary raise in prices - but things got back to normal after a year or two:

image.png.d907b7144b987ceebce51f28f0c67caa.png

(2009 - 2017 HDD prices per GB)

 

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