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JimMo
I'd Rather Do It Myself


Reged: 01/08/07

Loc: Under the SE Michigan lightdom...
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: Garry]
      #5635697 - 01/21/13 08:55 PM

Hey Garry,

Well, I got most of that right. The thing about Dick's store is that it's three hours from the nearest population center and five hours from Detroit or Chicago, although there is lots of big money in the Traverse City area.

See you out at Lake Hudson.


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Glen A W
professor emeritus


Reged: 07/04/08

Loc: USA
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: JimMo]
      #5637581 - 01/22/13 07:20 PM

I can't imagine actually visiting a real telescope store. As a kid, I used to dream of such a thing - I'd never seen a telescope bigger than my 60mm, so just looking at them would have been pretty amazing. It seems to me the biggest trouble is not the Internet, but the economy. In 2008, I went nuts and bought everything I wanted for astronomy, because the prices were right. None of the equipment has broken yet, and so I have hardly bought a thing since then, and I haven't had the money I had five years ago, either. The past 15 years or so will probably be looked back on as an anomaly in many things, astronomy equipment included. I'll sure hang on to everything I have since I don't expect to be able to afford those things again - many items are up 25% or more since I bought them. GW

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dvb
different Syndrome.
*****

Reged: 06/18/05

Loc: Vancouver, Canada
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5638109 - 01/23/13 12:32 AM

Canada seems pretty well served by telescope stores, considering its relatively small population, and less than optimal observing weather.

We now have two bricks-and-mortar stores in Metro Vancouver - Vancouver Telescope Centre, and the newer Canadian Telescope. Not far away is Island Eyepiece.

Some go, but others come, and a remarkable number stay.


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Bill Weir
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 06/01/04

Loc: Metchosin (Victoria), Canada
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: dvb]
      #5638192 - 01/23/13 02:17 AM

Actually Island Eyepiece is closing. The main reason is that he now has a very good job that makes it not worth using up all his extra time dealing with the astro buisiness. Family is more important than thin profit margins.

I'll miss handing over my hard earn cash to Brian but then again it will also make it easier to hold onto it.

Bill


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microstar
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 01/05/08

Loc: Canada
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: dvb]
      #5638688 - 01/23/13 11:08 AM

Quote:

Canada seems pretty well served by telescope stores, considering its relatively small population, and less than optimal observing weather.

We now have two bricks-and-mortar stores in Metro Vancouver - Vancouver Telescope Centre, and the newer Canadian Telescope. Not far away is Island Eyepiece.

Some go, but others come, and a remarkable number stay.




And All-Star-Telescope between Calgary and Edmonton seems to be doing OK. I think the advantage Canadian companies have is that it's expensive to bring an expensive astro product across the border with brokerage fees, shipping and taxes. It's often more convenient and less expensive to get the item through a local shop.
...Keith


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RobFriedman
member
*****

Reged: 12/25/05

Loc: Long Island, NY
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: microstar]
      #5638999 - 01/23/13 02:21 PM

Wow All these stores in other parts of the country. Ages ago I worked at Olden Camera (now gone)we only had Questar (and loads of camera equipment). B&H has a nice display of scopes as does Adorama (I met the Adorama scope man at a star party before he even worked there. Now that I no longer work in Manhattan, here on Long Island, we have a really nice b&m store called Camera Concepts & Telescops in Patchogue. A friend of mine used to work for them when they were mainly cameras... now.. thsy still have some camera items but they have a LOT of scopes and knowledge! the owner talks at various astro groups and it's where I found the used Hardin. Just really nice people

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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5639027 - 01/23/13 02:39 PM

Quote:

I can't imagine actually visiting a real telescope store. As a kid, I used to dream of such a thing - I'd never seen a telescope bigger than my 60mm, so just looking at them would have been pretty amazing. It seems to me the biggest trouble is not the Internet, but the economy. In 2008, I went nuts and bought everything I wanted for astronomy, because the prices were right. None of the equipment has broken yet, and so I have hardly bought a thing since then, and I haven't had the money I had five years ago, either. The past 15 years or so will probably be looked back on as an anomaly in many things, astronomy equipment included. I'll sure hang on to everything I have since I don't expect to be able to afford those things again - many items are up 25% or more since I bought them. GW




Understand where you're coming from. I'm planning on retiring in a couple of years or three. I'm buying the equipment now as I won't be able to later on, so I'm getting the best I can afford right now (and spending more than I should).


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Glen A W
professor emeritus


Reged: 07/04/08

Loc: USA
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5639063 - 01/23/13 03:08 PM

Quote:


Understand where you're coming from. I'm planning on retiring in a couple of years or three. I'm buying the equipment now as I won't be able to later on, so I'm getting the best I can afford right now (and spending more than I should).




A great idea. It will never be this good for buying equipment again. The prices are unbelievably good. GW


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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5639074 - 01/23/13 03:13 PM

I am happy to say that today I have fulfilled one of my "bucket list" items. I am now the proud owner of the complete set of Nager T1 smoothsides. WhooHoo!!!

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bierbelly
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/23/04

Loc: Sterling, VA
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5639119 - 01/23/13 03:41 PM

Well, oddly enough, a brix and mortar telescope store has recently opened near me here in VA. It's in Old Town Fairfax as far as I can tell.

http://stellogix.com/en/

I created an account, but still no online prices...go figure. Most of their stuff is Orion, a little bit of Vixen.

Now why in the world would you open an Orion outlet, where peeps have to pay sales tax? Nevertheless, I suppose I'll need to wander on over there sometime soon, before they close.


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Starman1
Vendor (EyepiecesEtc.com)
*****

Reged: 06/24/03

Loc: Los Angeles
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: bierbelly]
      #5639123 - 01/23/13 03:44 PM

Quote:

Well, oddly enough, a brix and mortar telescope store has recently opened near me here in VA. It's in Old Town Fairfax as far as I can tell.

http://stellogix.com/en/

I created an account, but still no online prices...go figure. Most of their stuff is Orion, a little bit of Vixen.

Now why in the world would you open an Orion outlet, where peeps have to pay sales tax? Nevertheless, I suppose I'll need to wander on over there sometime soon, before they close.



Because shipping a telescope may exceed sales tax?
Because buying it right now instead of waiting is worth a premium?
Because Sales Tax funds road paving, fire departments, police departments, schools, etc., etc.?


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bierbelly
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/23/04

Loc: Sterling, VA
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: Starman1]
      #5639138 - 01/23/13 03:53 PM

Quote:

Quote:

Well, oddly enough, a brix and mortar telescope store has recently opened near me here in VA. It's in Old Town Fairfax as far as I can tell.

http://stellogix.com/en/

I created an account, but still no online prices...go figure. Most of their stuff is Orion, a little bit of Vixen.

Now why in the world would you open an Orion outlet, where peeps have to pay sales tax? Nevertheless, I suppose I'll need to wander on over there sometime soon, before they close.



Because shipping a telescope may exceed sales tax?




Now you know that'll be built into the base price.
Quote:

Because buying it right now instead of waiting is worth a premium?




Probably the only reason. Hope they have a lot of walk-ins.

Quote:

Because Sales Tax funds road paving, fire departments, police departments, schools, etc., etc.?




And a lot of other stuff I don't agree with in Virginia.


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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: bierbelly]
      #5639211 - 01/23/13 04:34 PM

...because they put your scope together correctly and deliver it to you collimated, ready to go, and give you instructions on using it, collimating it, and setting it up. Another thing you get: Customer Service. I bought my scopes from the scope store. I recently ordered motor drives for the CG4 mount. When I asked how much for them to install them and make sure everything was up and running; their answer: $0, nada, nothing, zip--why? Because I bought the scopes there. It's also how I've picked up some used equipment for a decent price--plus I got to see, hold, and look thru that piece of used equipment BEFORE I bought it. And you know what, I paid only $30 more then the online price of the scope--worth it--YOU BET!

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Glen A W
professor emeritus


Reged: 07/04/08

Loc: USA
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5639214 - 01/23/13 04:37 PM

The main trouble I see is stocking enough variety to make it a place worthwhile to the customer. This stuff is so specialized and you would really need to have the selection of Astronomics or OPT to draw the people in, I'd think. GW

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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5639227 - 01/23/13 04:48 PM

The store can also order anything you could and probably get it quicker. There is also the matter of services, not just products. Like the lady at the scope shop told me, she makes a good chunk of their profits from collimation, swapping out focusers, modifying scopes, and other services. Also, mfgrs tend to treat dealers differently then they do end users, If I have a problem, I go to the dealer where I bought the scope, and they will take care of dealing with the mfgr (luckily I have not had any problems). Plus it's a nice place to meet fellow astronomers. I just ran into Jack Eastman yesterday at the scope shop--why he was messing around with a little Orion tabletop beginnerscope, I have no idea; he has equpment that'd literally make your jaw drop.....but I'm sure someone will be looking thru that scope.

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csrlice12
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 05/22/12

Loc: Denver, CO
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: Glen A W]
      #5639228 - 01/23/13 04:48 PM

The store can also order anything you could and probably get it quicker. There is also the matter of services, not just products. Like the lady at the scope shop told me, she makes a good chunk of their profits from collimation, swapping out focusers, modifying scopes, and other services. Also, mfgrs tend to treat dealers differently then they do end users, If I have a problem, I go to the dealer where I bought the scope, and they will take care of dealing with the mfgr (luckily I have not had any problems). Plus it's a nice place to meet fellow astronomers. I just ran into Jack Eastman yesterday at the scope shop--why he was messing around with a little Orion tabletop beginnerscope, I have no idea; he has equpment that'd literally make your jaw drop.....but I'm sure someone will be looking thru that scope.

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kbastro
scholastic sledgehammer
*****

Reged: 04/20/08

Loc: Running from Clouds
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5639426 - 01/23/13 06:57 PM

yeah Canada has astro stores but some big ones did go....

eftonscience, astro mechanics, perceptor, quasar optics,

in time all the stores we know will close as owners retire, new things and technologies come along (eg parks/scope city didnt change so out they went) and people leave it for the new..... in our bigger better faster more world we made

kb


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mich_al
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 05/10/09

Loc: Rural central lower Michigan ...
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5639536 - 01/23/13 08:33 PM

Quote:


Understand where you're coming from. I'm planning on retiring in a couple of years or three. I'm buying the equipment now as I won't be able to later on, so I'm getting the best I can afford right now (and spending more than I should).




I was in a similar situation. I knew the company I was working for would close the door when the phone quit ringing and it weas ringing less and less all the time. We got a fairly good project that I knew would keep us open for a while longer. I put my name on the list at AP for the next run of AP900's. Some months later when I went back to my office after the meeting nameing the closing date I has a message on my phone. Yep, Daleen at AP saying if I still wanted the mount to give her a call. My better sense said it was not the best time to spend $9k.


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okieav8rAdministrator
I'd rather be flying!
*****

Reged: 03/01/09

Loc: Oklahoma!
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: csrlice12]
      #5640080 - 01/24/13 06:41 AM

Quote:

The store can also order anything you could and probably get it quicker. There is also the matter of services, not just products. Like the lady at the scope shop told me, she makes a good chunk of their profits from collimation, swapping out focusers, modifying scopes, and other services. Also, mfgrs tend to treat dealers differently then they do end users, If I have a problem, I go to the dealer where I bought the scope, and they will take care of dealing with the mfgr (luckily I have not had any problems). Plus it's a nice place to meet fellow astronomers. I just ran into Jack Eastman yesterday at the scope shop--why he was messing around with a little Orion tabletop beginnerscope, I have no idea; he has equpment that'd literally make your jaw drop.....but I'm sure someone will be looking thru that scope.




Randy, I don't know what telescope shop you shop at, but if it's S&S Optica, I can also say it's a good one to do business with. Cathy has a table at Okie-Tex each fall, and I always try to make sure I do a little business with her while I'm there. She's good people.

I also enjoy visiting with Jack Eastman and his big Alvan Clark refractor at Okie-Tex every year. He's a very nice guy.


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hottr6
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 06/28/09

Loc: 7,500', Magdalena Mtns, NM
Re: astronomy stores going out of buisness? new [Re: kbastro]
      #5640170 - 01/24/13 08:18 AM

ScopeCity closed it's doors late 2012.

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