Engine detail v. liscensing?


willimo
07-22-2003, 01:20 AM
It occured to me somewhere near the Gulf of Mexico today, that perhaps there are so many curbside kits because the car companies don't grant the model companies permission to replicate the engine. Any one in the know on this? I actually bet the automakers are pretty stingy with engine specs. What do ya'll think?

Toksin
07-22-2003, 01:31 AM
Possibly, but it's probably also cheaper to make a curbside kit than a fully detailed kit.

freakmech
07-22-2003, 01:57 AM
i think its the cost of development that regulates whether or not a kit has an engine or not. i cant imagine a company would deny a model company rights to"specs" of an engine. its not like people are replicating engines from 1/24 scale models.... thats sort of a silly idea. by the way.... where in LA are you... im in New Orleans... just curious... the ONLY modellers ive found here are Military and i have to special order everything.

CamaroSSBoy346
07-22-2003, 02:07 AM
I heard it was that people could put motors in them. Like tamiyas motorized new beetle and other motorized SUV's. Tinyimports.com sells motorized conversions.

DJ RaYgU
07-22-2003, 02:13 AM
Originally posted by CamaroSSBoy346
I heard it was that people could put motors in them. Like tamiyas motorized new beetle and other motorized SUV's. Tinyimports.com sells motorized conversions.

Holy crap... Does that mean I can put like an RC motor in my ITR and it will go!? woohoo, 5 hp!!

egon_dude
07-22-2003, 03:33 AM
I think the licences to make a likeness of the car body probably costs a lot more than the engine bay, plus if the model makers have access to the real car to make their patterns up it doesnt take much to flip the bonnet up and take a look inside . . . I know some of the older tamiya stuff didnt have engines as they had little battery powered motors in, cars like the toyota celica group B and the porsche 962. But i think mainly its down to the price of the kit- the engine mouldings are quite fiddly so must be difficult to mould.

RallyRaider
07-22-2003, 07:28 AM
I know with Formula One subjects the model companies are not allowed access to the engines much anymore. The last three Tamiya F1 kits - F2000, F2001 and FW24 were a bit of a fudge in the engine area. So that is another reason for curbsides, none of Revell's recent F1 efforts have had engines.

I like curbside kits, it takes long enough for me to build one of those, add an engine and it would take twice as long!

willimo
07-22-2003, 08:27 PM
Ya'll are probably right, F1 is probably the only group that has secrets that they have to guard so closely. Anyway, it was stuck in my mind all day so I wanted some feedback on the idea, and thought it were possible that maybe someone in here had some sort of connections in the auto/model liscensing business.

Freakmech- I'm in BR. The only place I go is Hobby Towne, but his selection of Japanese car kits isn't enormous, it's pretty much only Tamiya and some other old ones that he no doubt special ordered but never sold. I do almost all of my detail purchases online, and a growing number of kits purchases too. Sorry I can't help you there. I was actually planning a trip to NO to see if they had any good shops down there, should I save the trip?

Also- do you attend any model contests? I've been going to the Cajun Modelfest for a few years now, they hold it at the USS Kidd here in town. The next one is at the end of Sept. PM me if you want details?

hirofkd
07-23-2003, 09:32 PM
In a sense, licensing do raise the total production cost, so it's not entirely unrelated, but the major factor is the tooling cost. It costs more than $200,000 to make one kit, and it has to be split by $20-30 kit. The manufacturer gets about 40% of the retail, so $200,000 is divided by $8, or 25000 kits to reach the break even. Annual production is about 2000-4000 kits, so it takes more than 10 years to recover the investment.
If they can get away with a curbside, they do, and I think it's a practical business decision.
Licensing cost varies from zero to $10000 or even more PER YEAR!
Blame those greedy lawyers.

Fooesboy
07-24-2003, 12:12 PM
I can only share some info on this subject with a view to F1.

When the team I work for was intrested in producing model kits of this years car, I was more than intrerested in following the results and also took the time to talk with the markiting team. We where asking 35% of the retail price, and sold licences to MiniChamps, Revell, Tamiya and S27. There was NO WAY that we would provide ANY info on the engine. That reads NONE! I am also sad to report that Tamiya was only intrested in a R/C car, and declined the option of a 1/20 or 1/12 scale kit.

Sorry for the bad english!

Zurbert82
07-24-2003, 08:21 PM
When the team I work for was intrested in producing model kits of this years car, I was more than intrerested in following the results and also took the time to talk with the markiting team. We where asking 35% of the retail price, and sold licences to MiniChamps, Revell, Tamiya and S27. There was NO WAY that we would provide ANY info on the engine. That reads NONE! I am also sad to report that Tamiya was only intrested in a R/C car, and declined the option of a 1/20 or 1/12 scale kit.


Is this team Sauber by any chance? :)

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