things goin' on at RS

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sofaspud
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things goin' on at RS

Post by sofaspud » Sat Jun 18, 2011 11:06 pm

I've heard from multiple sources, including employees, that Radio Shack is moving back toward more parts and tools in their
stores. Anybody else hear this? I'm wondering what it might mean. Microcontroller kits? Class D stereo modules? Headphone
amp parts? Forrest Mims III books? Sleeper bargains on enclosures or raw loudspeaker drivers (or another old favorite, the
clearance tables?)

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CeaSaR
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by CeaSaR » Sat Jun 18, 2011 11:59 pm

Aha! I was waiting for this chance to speak.

About a month and a half ago, I was at a brand new RS in a strip mall that we go to on our
normal shopping day (Walmart is the anchor) and they were still stocking it - they still had
to put some shelves together and bring in the rest of the merch. I asked when they opened
and they said it was just the 2nd day and they supposed they would have everything up and
ready in a day or 2. Then I spied the drawers... they were at least 1-1/2 times the size of the
ones we are used to seeing (if your's even had them!) and they were placed across from each
other. The store had a more open layout in that you could see across the whole store and many
things were grouped much more logically (at least what they had out). Then came the shocker.
The manager told me that RS had listened to the customer base and was bringing back more of
the parts and was even thinking about restocking some of the speaker parts (drivers, x-overs, etc.)
that have been gone from the stores for so long. This is supposed to be the new "Alpha" store (I
think this is what he called it) and would be the basis of the rest of the stores when it comes time
for revamping. God, I hope so!

YES!!! Finally the one lone major chain has listened to the customer base. I even suggested that
the stores/company bring back some of the kits or even have some more involved hobby schematics
on their in-store pamphlets than the obligatory LED "flash" light. Get them started with that, but keep
them coming back with more interesting projects, but make them useful to today's kid. That way, they
will make more loyal customers and keep them. Maybe even have an employee working on a project
throughout the day in order to pique interest.

I hope it works.

CeaSaR
Hey, what do I know?

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MrAl
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by MrAl » Sun Jun 19, 2011 5:29 am

Hi,


Sounds good to me too. I'd like to see them stay in business. If i see one more RS go under i'll have to start my own :smile:

Maybe what happened was that the dispersion of hobbyists reduced parts sales in individual areas, so i wonder what good it will do for them overall. The internet probably stole some of their business too, so their prices would have to be competitive.

They also used to have the order-from-the-catalog-pick-up-at-store service. The catalog was big too and this wasnt their normal catalog. They even had some exotic parts in there. Took maybe a week to get them to the store, then i would go pick them up. I think they sold the catalog too for about two dollars US. Anyone else remember this service? Maybe 10 years ago?

I've also read that Walmart is getting into this area too now. Opening "Mini" Wallmarts where you order online and go to store and pick it up. The store is small, but after you order the product it gets shipped from giant warehouse to mini store where you pick it up a few days (maybe) later. The mini stores will be much cheaper to run then the large Walmarts they have now.
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

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CeaSaR
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by CeaSaR » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:23 am

RS still has the order "out", pick up "in" model. The only difference is that the catalog
is on-line, not paper (not the best choice as I can find things faster in a paper book
than I can going through a huge website, but that's just me). And yeah, price is going
to be the biggest sticking point for today's consumer. BUT, if you need it NOW, you'll
take your price beating in order to get the project done or item fixed.

The catalogs... I threw a couple of them out not to long ago. I think they were from
the late '80s.

Walmart is doing what JC Penney used to do from the 70's through the 90's? There was
one tucked into the corner of a local drugstore (the one that had Treasury brand items)
and you would look through the catalog, pick out your item(s), pay and wait for them to
be delivered to the store. I think Sears still has a similar service in that certain items you
can pick up at the local warehouse. Hmm, Staples does the same thing except they deliver
either to the closest store or your home. Store is free, home is shipping. Oh, and Walmart
does have an ordering service already. The one I go to (mentioned in my post above) has
it in what used to be their layaway department (they should never have gotten rid of that,
but I understand why they did). I wonder how many other stores do the same thing?

CeaSaR
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MrAl
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by MrAl » Sun Jun 19, 2011 9:43 am

Hi Ceasar,


Where is this catalog online now?
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

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CeaSaR
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by CeaSaR » Sun Jun 19, 2011 11:02 am

It's not technically a catalog, but an on-line store like all the others. Radioshack.com
Just search (and search, and search) for what you want, click and buy.

CeaSaR
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sofaspud
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by sofaspud » Sun Jun 19, 2011 11:06 am

Yeah, y'all are reminding me of the small town Sears catalog stores. An old idea new again?
Wasn't the RS service with its own catalog called TechAmerica? I still have a catalog or two around here. It lasted a few years
in the late 90s but succumbed to the web and RS's move to cell phones.

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MrAl
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by MrAl » Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:38 pm

Ceasar,

That's not 1/10 th the catalog i was talking about. They have some parts, but only common parts.
For example, in the parts catalog they had UGN3505, 3507, and 3515 HED's and they are no where to be found now
(hall effect devices).
They had a ton of parts in that catalog, almost every ic like TTL and CMOS for example.
What ever happened to that service?
LEDs vs Bulbs, LEDs are winning.

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Lenp
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Re: things goin' on at RS

Post by Lenp » Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:59 pm

Hey guys,
Most of the Radio Shack catalogs, from 1940 til the last, have been scanned and can be viewed here: http://www.radioshackcatalogs.com/
Len
Len

“To invent, you need a good imagination and a big pile of junk.” (T. Edison)
"I must be on the way to success since I already have the junk". (Me)

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